Potential threat of EV Hideo Kumano (Chief Economist, Dai-ichi Life Research Institute)|電経新聞

Potential threat of EV Hideo Kumano (Chief Economist, Dai-ichi Life Research Institute)

This summer’s heat wave has already reached an abnormal level. There is no doubt that the global environment is undergoing major changes. Decarbonization has become urgent. Citizens around the world will surely take a strong interest in measures to deal with this high temperature, and will begin to make efforts on their own. One of them is the behavior of replacing cars with EVs. The worldwide EV shift is expected to accelerate rapidly in the next few years.

In fact, since 2020 due to the corona disaster, this EV conversion is accelerating at a tremendous pace. The EV sales ratio in the global automobile market jumped from 4% in 2020 to 14% in 2022. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), it is projected to reach 18% by the end of 2023. It is possible that it will exceed this forecast and reach 20%.
The shift to EVs is considered to be a challenge for many Japanese manufacturers. Japanese manufacturers also have a lineup of EVs, but they are not among the best-selling EVs in the world.
The top selling EV cars are American makers, followed by Chinese makers. Manufacturers that are ahead in the sales of EVs occupy the top positions, and major European manufacturers and Japanese manufacturers are latecomers, so their shares are low.

EV vehicles (BEV only, excluding hybrids) in new car sales will be extremely low at 1.42% in 2022 in Japan.
Norway has a high percentage of EV conversion, at 79.3%. The proportion in Europe is also high at 21%. China is also high, rising to 29%. In Europe, Chinese-made EVs are popular, and Japanese-made EVs are still overshadowed.
In the United States, the EV ratio is still low at 8%, but the government aims to raise it to 50% by 2030 through policy support.
The Biden administration is showing willingness to accelerate the spread of EVs using measures such as inflation control laws. It builds a network of chargers across the United States and subsidizes the purchase of electric vehicles by consumers. Preferential measures will be taken for overseas EV factories that enter the United States.
For Japanese manufacturers, it already has a high sales share of around 30% in gasoline vehicles. The challenge is whether this can be realized even in the EV shift.

Even in the field of EV, there seems to be an advantage of being ahead of the curve, and the manufacturers that have already established the brand image of EV seem to have the upper hand. It is difficult for consumers who have once switched from a gasoline car to an EV to switch back to a gasoline car, and it is expected that gasoline cars made by Japanese manufacturers will struggle.
Among Japan’s export industries, automobiles have come to be the main earner. If that industry loses ground due to the shift to EVs, the Japanese manufacturing industry itself will be in trouble.
EV conversion is becoming a serious risk.