Global electric vehicle adoption could boost French, Canadian regions

Shares in EV developers and parts suppliers in both countries have been booming as demand grows

Canadian electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers and parts suppliers are lining up for investment as demand grows in the United States and Canada for sustainable vehicles.

“As countries look for climate solutions, we will see demand for electric vehicles continue to increase,” says Sanjay Patel, senior director of North American sales for electrified driving systems, Magna International.

Led by Vancouver-based EV supplier Magna, foreign companies announced billions of dollars in EV investment in Canada last year. Within the US, Ford’s F-150 and Transit products were presented at the Detroit auto show in January, where President Donald Trump congratulated Ford on making the first affordable electric truck and on its factory expansion in Wayne, Michigan.

As countries look for climate solutions, we will see demand for electric vehicles continue to increase Sanjay Patel, Magna International

Earlier in the year, Magna bought a 23.8% stake in Nikola Motors for $36m. Nikola will develop Nikola One, a fully-electric vehicle for more affordable prices. Nikola revealed that it has raised $225m in investment. It currently has an agreement with Quebec-based Total to supply 1,000 batteries for the first production model of the Nikola One, which is planned for 2021.

Elsewhere, Canada’s shift towards greener vehicles has attracted investment in Kentucky by EV components maker Magna, which took over Visteon Corporation last year.

Global electric vehicles sales are expected to grow to 54m by 2040 and increase lithium-ion battery demand worldwide, prompting Magna to aggressively invest in this part of the business. Magna expects future sales of lithium-ion batteries to be about $12bn in 2025 and $50bn by 2040.

Electric-vehicle uptake in Canada is also increasing steadily. Magna said it expects that sales of EVs in Canada will reach 250,000 by 2020.

As EV sales in the US and Canada grow, foreign manufacturers will also look to build storage batteries for EV owners to backup charge networks.

Last month, Samsung SDI announced that it had acquired Boston’s Solid State Battery company for an undisclosed amount. Using the energy gained from discharging a EV, batteries can be used to re-start electric cars, extend battery life and improve security by avoiding catastrophic power failures or thefts.

Boston has already demonstrated its technology in the Jeju Island project in South Korea, where 130 homes – and five farms – recharged EVs using 100 kW of power. Solid State Battery is a subsidiary of Belgian holding company Groupe Europiel.

Watch the Guardian’s month-long series on the future of self-driving cars and the future of mobility. Read the latest episode here.

• This article was amended on 10 April 2018 to remove an outdated reference to Ziff Davis, which has now been sold to Netmarble Games.

• This article was amended on 10 April 2018 to remove an outdated reference to Rufus, which has now been sold to Netmarble Games.

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