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Outside of Tesla, future EV sales in the U.S. may be thin for most brands: study

(Reuters) – the U.S. demand for electric vehicles, including hybrids, could rise to 1.28 million by 2026, a new study projected on Wednesday, but most brands will struggle to make money on the new models.

FILE PHOTO: The 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLC EQC is revealed in 2019, the New York International Auto Show in New York City, New York, USA, April 17, 2019. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton/File Photo

Research firm IHS Markit forecasts that more than 130 models in the U.S. market, 43 brands, offers electrical propulsion, either pure battery electric or hybrid petrol-electric.

But two-thirds of the sales will be registered by the top 10 brands, dominated by the segment leader Tesla who, more than a quarter of sales, according to IHS automotive analyst Stephanie Brinley.

The other brands are good for an estimated 392,000 units, an average of only 11,900 cars per brand, ” she said.

“In the near future, EV competition is very high,” Brinley said. “More choice and availability of the drive sales growth, but the number of vehicle introductions is initially faster than the demand for the electric propulsion option.”

The market for EVs is growing rapidly, IHS Markit projected.

In 2026, 48 brands selling a total of 16.8 million vehicles (including EVs), which works to an average 350,000 sales per brand in the total market.

Pure electric and hybrid vehicles will account for 7.6% of sales, compared with only 1.2% in 2018.

Tesla was the Number 20 of the brand’s total sales in the U.S. last year, according to trade journal Automotive News. But the new competition comes from a bunch of global car makers, especially Volkswagen, Daimler, General Motors Co and Ford Motor Co.

Tesla, which delivered 240,000 EVs to customers worldwide last year and expects to sell 360,000 to 400,000 this year, continue to dominate the market in 2026, IHS Markit predicts, with average sales of other brands at around 25,000 units.

But even Tesla has struggled to earn a living for most of his nine years as a public company. It reported a first quarter loss of more than $700 million on the sale of more than 63,000 vehicles. Shares were down to $188.10 in the mid-day trade Wednesday.

Much of the industry of the planned $300 billion of investment in electric vehicles and batteries over the next ten years is directed at China, that is the projection of EV and plug-in hybrid sales in 2025, at least 5 million, or up to 20% of the total sales of vehicles.

The structure of the EV market in the United States is not in contrast to the rest of the market, only on a smaller scale. Last year, the top 10 brands in the United States accounted for almost three-quarters of the 17.3 million vehicles sold, according to Automotive News.

Reporting by Paul Lienert in Detroit; Editing by Sonya Hepinstall

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