Presently around 4% of nickel is diverted to the battery sector as a whole, as distinct from solely EVs.
My belief is that the chart above is way too conservative in outyears.
First, the counter intuitive is occurring with luxury vehicles, which have been very quick off the mark to get new models out as EVs. There’s a few reasons.
First, many are not just high end, they were also very fast. But Teslas are literally outpacing them, so that’s one aspect of appeal that is now lost.
Secondly, as Teslas have proven, EVs can pack a massive amount of technology into a vehicle that gives you the option of almost carefree driving in luxury, or maxing out the responsiveness of the car at “normal” speeds.
Thirdly, and perhaps the biggie, luxury car owners don’t like losing a fortune on their new purchase, and the resale vale of ICE luxury vehicles is extremely likely to plummet.
At the “average” buyer level, and perhaps more speculatively, I have a suspicion the “iphone” effect will bite more quickly than most anticipate. That is, EVs are not just a novelty, they are a step change in technology AND safety. Furthermore, while they might be a fair bit more expensive now as an upfront purchase, running costs will compensate if you hold the cars for a longer term than usual. All the more compelling when the car you have today will have a poor resale value in a few years time.
At the bus fleet level, China leads the world in electrification. Given western world concerns about CO2 emissions, it’s not too hard for local municipalities and governments to mandate CO2-free public transport.
I’m ambivalent on the heavy vehicle sector as I see hydrogen as the better option down the track; a bit like a re-run of the Beta v’s VHS competition which saw VHS win because it ran longer and cost less.
Back onto metal supply, its producers of nickel sulphide concentrate for the EV battery sector which will outperform in coming years, and this is not the type of nickel that has been coming out of Indonesia or the Philippines. I see a reasonable chance that this distinction will see nickel prices divide for stainless steel supply and EV batteries respectively.