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Published on February 1st, 2017 | by Matt Pressman

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Is EV Revolution Threatening Oil Company Investor Death Spiral?

February 1st, 2017 by  


Originally published on EV Annex blog.

Tesla Motors [NASDAQ: TSLA] continues to lead the electric vehicle revolution. We just reported that the Tesla Model S was 2016’s best selling electric vehicle in the US. Between the Model S and X, Tesla owns nearly 30% market share of all electric vehicles sold in this country. And, it’s not just the US. It turns out that the Tesla Model S was the best-selling plug-in electric car worldwide. That said, could Elon Musk and Tesla Motors lead an electric vehicle revolution that could eventually pose a threat to Big Oil? And … does Big Oil see any threat coming?

Above: Tesla Model S and X (Instagram: better.e)

Investors sense that change is coming. The Financial Times reported that the threat of electric cars could create an ‘investor death spiral’ for oil companies. In the meantime, Tesla Motors stock has been steadily rising. Oil Price* just reported on the EV threat citing, “gains in battery technologies – energy density, power density and cost reduction – [which] are even more impressive” especially when you consider that projects like Tesla’s Gigafactory have just started producing battery cells.

Above: Tesla Model S leading all plug-in electric vehicle sales worldwide in 2016 (Source: Hybrid Cars)

Oil Price reminds us that, “by now we all know the Henry Ford story and how the ‘horseless carriage’ was relegated to museums. But let’s be intellectually honest: The old nag in the stable had about as much chance to compete against a Model T as a slide rule could against a digital calculator. Or a paper map against a GPS chip; or a phone booth against an iPhone. In all these cases, the new product steamrolled over a weak incumbent.” Could electric vehicles pose this same threat to gas-guzzling cars?

Above: Tesla Model S (Instagram: 3fevteslarent)

One oil giant admits a massive transformation coming. It’s reported that, “BP has come out with its own predictions for the future, and they too seem convinced that electric vehicles will see rapid and sustained growth. More precisely, they are predicting a 100-fold increase by 2035, moving from a mere 1 million cars on the road today to 100 million globally.”

Above: Is this the gas station of the future? (Instagram: hwfireyh)

Peter Tertzakian, Chief Energy Economist and Managing Director at ARC Financial, concludes: “This is one of the most dramatic moments I’ve experienced in my 35-year career studying all energy systems. The technological change is breath-taking; the investment potential is staggering; and on top of it all, the business psychology is intriguing. … This is going to be one of the most exciting business duels in history; two giant energy systems will be competing for the hearts and wheels of the people.”

*Source: Oil Price






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About the Author

is all about Tesla. He’s a TSLA investor, pre-ordered the Model 3, and loves driving the family's Model S and Model X company cars. As co-founder of EVANNEX, a family business specializing in aftermarket Tesla accessories, he’s served as a contributor/editor of Electric Vehicle University (EVU) and the Owning Model S and Getting Ready for Model 3 books. He writes daily about Tesla and you can follow his work on the EVANNEX blog.



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