Automotive Industry Hot Topics with CAR President and CEO, Alan Amici –  (03/29/2024)

On a bi-weekly basis, the Center for Automotive Research (CAR) welcomes our audience to decompress with our President and CEO, Alan Amici, as he covers and shares his thoughts on the latest Hot Topics happening in the automotive industry. If you would like to receive this bi-weekly insight into critical industry issues you and your organization are facing, sign up for our mailing list here to get Hot Topics sent directly to your inbox.  


Mine Advances in the US: 

Alan’s thoughts:

Battery prices are dropping, much to the delight of automakers and consumers. Consider that battery prices from 2017 were at $214/kWh (Bloomberg NEF), a 100kWh battery would cost $20,140. Today, battery prices are sub-$100/kWh, meaning the same 100kWh battery would cost less than $10,000. Advances in battery chemistry that reduce or eliminate the use of cobalt, coupled with new sources of lithium, are driving further price reductions. When will EVs achieve price parity with ICE vehicles? Difficult to say but it may be sooner than you think. 

While EV battery minerals such as lithium, cobalt, nickel, and graphite receive most of the attention of supply chain professionals, we should not forget about copper. As feature content of vehicles continues to grow, so does the per-vehicle demand of copper. Further, the transition to EVs will increase demand for copper. Automakers have begun to use aluminum as a replacement for copper in certain applications. Expect copper to remain a mainstay of vehicle electrical systems for the foreseeable future. 


EPA Ruling Changes:

Alan’s thoughts:

The collective sigh of relief coming out of Detroit was a reaction to the new EPA regulations. The Multi-Pollutant Emissions Standards for Model Years 2027, released on March 20th, are less stringent during the first four years than the original proposal, providing automakers with some relief between 2027 and 2030. The resulting regulations allow more time for automakers to transition their product portfolios to electric propulsion. Market demand for EVs continues to grow but the rate of growth has recently slowed. Consumers cite a nascent charging infrastructure and high price point of EVs as the primary reasons for slower growth rates. Federal infrastructure programs like the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) aim to jump start deployment of charging systems across the US and is expected to boost consumer confidence in EV viability. 


UAW Volkswagen Election:

Alan’s thoughts:

The UAW has formally requested a vote at the VW Chattanooga, TN assembly plant. After a successful campaign with the Detroit 3 last fall, the Union has set its sights on the Southeast. Will this be the year the UAW finally breaks through? Automakers in the region have offered anticipatory wage increases to limit interest in organizing efforts. Will it be enough? Buckle up for a bumpy ride. 




Alan Amici

President & CEO

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The post Automotive Industry Hot Topics with CAR President and CEO, Alan Amici (03/29/2024) appeared first on Center for Automotive Research.