SPY431.24-2.14 -0.49%
DIA341.55+0.09 0.03%
IXIC13,352.78-189.34 -1.40%

EV Year In Review: 5 Winners And 5 Losers From The EV Space In 2021

The electric vehicle transition was well underway in 2021, as economies slowly but steadily recovered from the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Consumer sentiment has rebounded from its 2020 lows, helping to lift consumer spending.

Benzinga · 12/29/2021 11:01

The electric vehicle transition was well underway in 2021, as economies slowly but steadily recovered from the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. Consumer sentiment has rebounded from its 2020 lows, helping to lift consumer spending.

Global EV penetration was at 10.4% in October, with Europe leading the way higher, followed by China, Credit Suisse analyst Dan Levy said in a recent note.

Analysts view the industry as possessing massive potential that could allow multiple players to operate profitably.

The year 2021 saw an increased thrust by legacy automakers to transition to EVs while nimble EV startups were carving a niche for themselves. These companies kept market leader Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) on its toes, forcing the Elon Musk-led company to push the throttle on defending and growing its market share.

EV stocks followed an almost identical trajectory in 2021. After peaking early in the year, most stocks retreated and bottomed in May, before making a comeback.

Following the rebound from the May lows, several of the embattled EV makers have come under renewed selling pressure and are in the red for the year-to-date period.

Here is the list of winners and losers from the space in 2021.

Related Link: Ford Has Sights Set On Eventually Toppling Tesla As The No. 1 EV Maker

The Winners

1. Lucid Lives Up To The Name Of Tesla Killer: Year-to-date Change: +44.24% (gains from the listing through SPAC deal on July 26)

Lucid Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:LCID) went public through a SPAC deal with Churchill Capital IV Corp, which valued the EV maker at $24 billion. Following the business agreement, Lucid began trading on the Nasdaq on July 26.

Lucid shares began to gather momentum in November, with the catalyst being the handing over of the first Lucid Air luxury sedan to customers. The company's flagship Air sedan was named the "2022 Motor Trend Car of the Year."

In the third-quarter earnings statement released in mid-November, the company said reservations rose above 17,000. At the end of the third quarter, the company had a cash balance of $4.8 billion.

The company was also added to the Nasdaq-100 Index earlier this month.

2. Second-Half Rebound Props Up Tesla Year-to-date Change: +43%

Tesla had a stellar year in terms of deliveries, having sold a record 627,350 cars in the nine-months ending in September. The performance is all the more important as it was achieved despite supply chain challenges. The company continued to push toward full-self driving and began making Model Y vehicles at its Giga Shanghai. Tesla is also on the cusp of seeing production vehicles rolling off its new factories in Berlin and Texas.

All along, Tesla had to navigate through challenges, including quality issues in China, safety recalls, and federal probes into vehicle safety. Then there were naysayers, who continued to say the stock was priced at an unsustainable valuation.

The strong rally in the second-half of the year helped push Tesla's market capitalization past $1 trillion. To cap off Tesla's strong year, Musk was named the "Person of the Year" by both Time Magazine and the Financial Times.

3. Fisker's Ocean SUV Updates Kept Shares Ticking: Year-to-date Change: +16.7%

Fisker, Inc. (NYSE:FSR), a pre-revenue company, is inching closer to production. The company said in its third-quarter earnings statement, it is on track to begin production of its Fisker Ocean SUV in November 2022.

As of Nov. 2 of this year, the company had reservations of 18,600 vehicles, including 1,400 fleet reservations.

XPeng Beefs Up Product Lineup: Year-to-date Change: +6.8%

Chinese electric startup XPeng, Inc. (NYSE:XPEV) was constantly in the news this year, with the launch of new and refreshed models as well as technology updates. The company announced its third vehicle model – the P5 sedan – this year and also started delivering the vehicle.

XPeng refreshed its G3 SUV and released the improved G3i model.

In another development, the company pursued a dual-primary listing on the Hong Kong stock exchange.

Li Auto Flies Under The Radar: Year-to-date Change: +5.5%

Li Auto, Inc. (NASDAQ:LI), which is the most inconspicuous among the U.S.-listed Chinese EV trio, reported deliveries of 76,404 for the nine months ending in November. The company's product portfolio includes the Li ONE, a midsize crossover SUV.

Related Link: Nio Analyst Reiterates Bullish Stance And Hikes Revenue Estimates Following 'Nio Day 2021'

The Losers

Lordstown's Nightmarish Year: Year-to-date Change: (-80%)

EV truckmaker Lordstown Motors Corp. (NASDAQ:RIDE) had a forgettable year as it was besieged by problems on all fronts. The company had to delay the production start time for its Endurance EV pickup truck to the second quarter of 2022.

The EV maker was also the subject of a probe by the SEC and the Justice Department over misleading investors regarding preorder numbers. Amid the federal investigations, the company was forced to undergo a management overhaul, firing its CEO and founder Steve Burns, its CFO and a few executives close to the founder,

The company received a lifeline in the form of an agreement to sell its Ohio plant to contract manufacturer Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. (PNK: HNHPF), popularly known as Foxconn.

2. Workhorse Fraught With Fundamental Woes: Year-to-date Change: (-74%)

Workhorse Group Inc. (NASDAQ:WKHS) faced a setback early this year when it lost out on a U.S. Postal Service contract to rival Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE:OSK).

In September, the company had to recall 41 of its C-1000 cargo delivery vehicles and suspended the remainder of its deliveries. The actions were attributed to additional testing needed to certify the vehicles under Federal safety standards.

The company continues to incur losses and is burning cash at an alarming rate.

3. Electrameccanica Languishes As Investors Remain Cautious: Year-to-date Change: (-59%)

Electrameccanica Vehicles Corp. (NASDAQ:SOLO) is still in the early stages of manufacturing. Earlier this month, the maker of SOLO, a 3-wheeled EV, said it has sold 42 SOLO EVs to reservation and fleet holders since it began delivering in early October.

The Canadian EV manufacturer recently said it expects to commission its facility in Mesa, Arizona in the summer of 2022 to assemble an enhanced, U.S-built 2023 model year SOLO EV.

At the end of the third quarter, the company had cash (and cash equivalents) and short-term deposits of $228.8 million.

4. Canoo Struggles To Find Footing : Year-to-date Change: (-39.4%)

Justin, Texas-based Canoo Inc. (NASDAQ:GOEV) is also a pre-revenue company.

The company recently announced plans to accelerate shifting its production from Europe to the U.S. Canoo expected to begin manufacturing at a proposed advanced industrialization facility in Northwest Arkansas. It also said it remains on track to bring its "Mega Micro" factory in Pryor, Oklahoma online in late 2023.

Canoo increased its guidance for 2022 and 2023, to 3,000-6,000 units and 14,000-17,000 units, respectively; up from previous guidance of 500-1000 units in 2022 and 15,000 units in 2023.

At the end of the third quarter, the company had cash and cash equivalents of $414.9 million.

5. Nio Sell-off Looks Overdone: Year-to-date Change: (-38.8%)

Nio, Inc. (NYSE:NIO) had a fairly positive year in terms of fundamentals and execution, except for the chip and component shortages that ate into deliveries during several months of the year.

The company successfully forayed into Norway in 2021, setting up sales and service centers. It continued to maintain the launch schedule of its fourth production model and first sedan – the ET7. Earlier this month at Nio Day 2021, the EV maker unveiled another sedan model named ET5 and announced its intent to expand into four more European countries.

Notwithstanding the positives, the stock continues to languish.

Related Link: Ford Delivers First Locally Made Mustang Mach-Es In China As It Looks To Compete With Electric Rivals Tesla, Nio