Rystad revises down end-of-decade EV adoption expectations

Consultancy expects 55pc global adoption by 2030, led by China, but only in one particular scenario; its central case is now lower

Rystad revises down end-of-decade EV adoption expectations
Rystad admits China is "in the driver's seat" in the EV market

Slowing growth in BEV adoption rates across the US and Europe so far in 2024 have led Norway-based consultancy Rystad Energy to moderate its forecast of what share of the global new sales pie all-electric vehicles will take in 2030. Its central case is now for 47pc BEV penetration.

Rystad partner Lars Lysdahl admits that "we have actually had to revise [our forecast] down somewhat recently", in light of March sales data. While "globally we expect 55pc EV adoption by 2030", this refers to Rystad's 1.9°C scenario, not its central case.

In September, EV inFocus reported a 53pc 2030 central forecast figure after attending a Rystad event. So 47pc does represent a shift down from that figure.

Despite the short-term slowdown in BEV growth so far in 2024 and its knock-on effect on the firm's view of the rest of the decade, Per Magnus Nysveen, senior partner and head of analysis at Rystad, says "we are seeing significant electrification [harming] big chunks of oil demand in passenger vehicles and medium commercial", although he concedes that trucking is lagging behind.

And while the downward revision in Rystad's global BEV forecast comes in part out of slower-than-expected growth in Europe, this does not stop Rystad projecting Europe to outstrip global EV adoption levels by 20 percentage points in its 2030 1.9°C scenario.

Lysdahl does admit, however, that — owing to the European market's performance in early 2024 — "there might be actually some downside risk to our forecast there, being 75pc in 2030".

China leading the way

Rystad calculates that "China passed 34pc adoption last year", according to Lysdahl. And the country's March number of 41pc leads him to "expect 42pc as the average this year".

"It might actually go higher than that; I think we may see above 50pc on a monthly basis for China," Lysdahl suggests.

Will this growing share of BEVs in the domestic sales mix halt a flow of Chinese exports? Lysdahl rather thinks that ex-China sales is part of the strategy. China's EV industry was "actually at overcapacity last year, and forcing them, and that was probably the plan also, to export a lot of vehicles", he says.

"What is interesting is that most of the cars that were exported from China to Europe were actually from European and US brands that have plants in China. For example, Tesla, Volvo, MG, BMW, they have plants in China, and exporting from China to Europe. And very small percentage of the Chinese exports to Europe were from Chinese brands," Lysdahl continues.
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But Lysdahl expects this to change soon — not only as Chinese brands, for example BYD or Leapmotor, build plants in Europe, but also as Chinese OEMs improve their export logistics.

"What they are also doing is vertically integrating into car carriers. So they actually own car carriers now [and are] operating those. And that is a very strong indication that these guys are planning to do a lot of exports and ship a lot of vehicles," Lysdahl says.

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