By Michael Elkin
Investing.com — Here’s your weekly Pro Recap of last week’s biggest EV headlines: Tesla Innovates and Hits Milestones; GM prepares to fight for Ford’s fleet business; TuSimple is in hot water; and emerging electric vehicle brands report in the first quarter.
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Tesla opens lithium refinery, targets 1 million electric vehicles by 2025
Tesla (NASDAQ:) opened a new lithium refinery in Texas on Monday, with which CEO Elon Musk aims to produce enough battery metal to build about 1 million vehicles by 2025. That would make it the world’s largest processor. lithium in North America. Tesla’s pioneering approach sets it apart as the only major automaker in the country that not only manufactures vehicles but also refines its own minerals, including lithium.
Tesla is going to need the materials because its Texas plant has hit a weekly production rate of 5,000 units for its Model Y, which equates to about 260,000 vehicles per year, according to a company announcement on Tuesday.
As things heat up at Tesla, brand supporters fear multi-billionaire Musk is needed more than ever. They might get their wish, as Musk announced on Thursday that he was quitting his Twitter post and devoting more time to Tesla.
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Mixed results for emerging electric vehicle brands
A number of emerging electric vehicle brands released their first quarter results this week, and Fisker (NYSE:) and Lucid (NASDAQ:) sadly fell short of expectations on Tuesday.
EPS of ($0.38), $0.08 lower than analyst’s estimate of ($0.30), while a shortfall of $0.04 itself. The poor performance trended lower EV shares in the US early in the day, with FSR down 5.3% and LCID down 9% in early trading.
Fisker followed the poor first quarter results by reducing production targets in the face of supply chain constraints. Fisker now expects to produce between 32,000 and 36,000 units in 2023, compared to its previous target of 42,400 cars.
Nikola (NASDAQ:) followed the trend, losing 9.3% on Tuesday after a wider quarterly loss and said it would pause truck production. The company’s cash burn was $240 million, as it produced 63 vehicles.
“This level of cash burn is unsustainable for our business, and we are reviewing all options to reduce expenses,” said Nikola chief financial officer Anastasiya Pasterick.
On Wednesday, Rivian (NASDAQ:) and Li Auto (NASDAQ:) wowed investors and industry analysts with their earnings releases, which InvestingPro subscribers received in real time.
with earnings per share of ($1.25), beating the consensus estimate of ($1.61) by $0.36. Similarly, , reporting EPS of 1.35 RMB, beating analysts’ estimate of 0.34 RMB by an impressive margin.
LI’s performance has earned it praise from several analysts, with Barclays writing that the company “proved to be one of the few to stay put.” And that the Chinese automaker “has clearly distanced itself from the rest of the pack of emerging electric vehicle manufacturers”.
Following Rivian’s successful first quarter performance, the company’s CEO, RJ Scaringe, appeared on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” for an interview conducted at the company’s manufacturing facility in Illinois.
During the interview, Scaringe highlighted Rivian’s commitment to ramping up production and hinted at potential partnerships beyond its existing collaboration with Amazon (NASDAQ:).
GM restructures to compete with longtime rival
At its annual Fleet Solutions Summit on Thursday, General Motors (NYSE:) announced the consolidation of its North American sales operations for commercial vehicles, parts and telematics services under a new brand called GM Evolve. The move positions GM to compete with longtime rival Ford (NYSE:) and its Ford Pro unit, as well as other industry players, for commercial vehicle fleet revenue.
GM shares ended at $32.40, down 2.85% for the week.
TuSimple threatened with delisting
TuSimple (NASDAQ:) ended its week in a hole after the self-driving trucking company received a Nasdaq delisting notice, as it announced on Thursday. The notice was issued due to the company’s failure to file its quarterly report on time.
Shares of TSP fell more than 30% on the news. According to the company, the exchange intends to suspend trading in its shares on May 15 unless it appeals.
TSP ended the week down 26.7%
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