Elon Musk’s Tesla dominates the electric vehicle space in the U.S. But that dominance could be set to weaken in the years ahead.
According to new research from S&P Global Mobility, more carmakers will pile into the space with lower-priced alternatives—especially with models costing less than $50,000, “where Tesla does not yet truly compete,” the firm wrote this week.
“Tesla’s position is changing as new, more affordable options arrive, offering equal or better technology and production build,” S&P wrote. “Given that consumer choice and consumer interest in EVs are growing, Tesla’s ability to retain a dominant market share will be challenged going forward.”
S&P predicts that Tesla’s EV market share will fall below 20% by 2025, down from 79% in 2020, 71% last year, and 65% this year (through the third quarter). By the end of 2025, it added, the number of EV models sold by different companies will have grown to 159, up from 48 today. That will mean far more options for consumers, and less of a market share for Tesla.
“Before you feel too badly for Tesla, however, remember that the brand will continue to see unit sales grow, even as share declines,” said Stephanie Brinley, associate director of AutoIntelligence for S&P Global Mobility, in a statement. “The EV market in 2022 is a Tesla market, and it will continue to be, so long as its competitors are bound by production capacity.”
But the research firm added that “production capacity is being addressed, as automakers, battery manufacturers and suppliers pour billions into that side of the equation.”
For example, Volkswagen’s new ID.4 assembly line in Tennessee has 20,000 unfilled reservations and a capacity of 7,000 units per month, S&P noted, and that alone “should change the EV volume picture significantly.”
Tesla did not immediately respond to Fortune’s request for comment.
In Tesla’s third-quarter earnings call, Musk said Tesla was working on a more affordable new model, having completed “the engineering for Cybertruck and for Semi.”
“We don’t want to talk exact dates,” he added, “but this is the primary focus of our new vehicle development team.”
“Tesla has opened two new assembly plants in 2022 and is looking for the site of its next North American plant,” S&P noted. “Tesla today is the brand best equipped for taking advantage of the immediate surge in EV demand, though manufacturing investments from other automakers will erode this advantage sooner than later.”
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