With pro football season about to begin, we thought it appropriate to use a gridiron metaphor: one research firm is estimating that Tesla Motors will outkick its coverage when it comes to the Gigafactory it's planning for the western US, likely Reno, NV. The electric-vehicle maker has said needs the giant battery plant because its annual sales will reach a half-million by the end of the decade. Lux Research is saying the company's EV sales will be closer to about half that.
Credit Suisse has proposed a novel idea for the European car industry, one whose title we are well familiar with: Car Czar. What would make this position far more radical than that formerly held by our own Steven Rattner is that the European car czar would be tasked with managing a reorganization of the entire industry across the continent, not just in one country. It cites Lewis Booth, retired Ford of Europe CEO and global COO, as the man for the job.
For the past decade or so, China has been looked upon by the automotive industry as something approaching a gold rush in waiting, with millions of units ripe for the selling. That may yet be true, but it's hard to reconcile that with the notion that China overbuilt to the tune of two million excess vehicles last year, and plans are in the works for about eight million more units. This, according to the country's National Development and Reform Commission.
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