Updated research from Interact Analysis shows that there will be 634,000 battery-electric trucks and buses in 2022, out of a total market of 18.2 million.
By 2030, there will be over 9 million battery-electric trucks and buses out of a total market of 21 million. Meanwhile, the total global market for trucks, both electrified and non-electrified, remains much larger than that of buses, so most OEMs are likely to prioritize development of electric trucks over buses, according to the research.
While battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) are set for strong growth, this will vary widely according to vehicle type and country. In Germany for example, the BEV market for buses will experience impressive growth in 2022 but little or no growth in 2029. In contrast, on a global basis, long-haul battery electric trucks have a low forecast shipment for 2022 but significant growth for 2029.
“It’s hard to quantify in data, but the Ukraine conflict has had an undoubtable impact on the electric vehicle market. This impact has been rather mixed," said Jamie Fox, principal analyst at Interact Analysis. "On the one hand, as regions become increasingly reluctant to rely on Russia for fossil fuels, this will likely create a faster push towards electrification. On the other hand, the conflict has created significant supply chain issues causing a substantial rise in commodity prices, battery prices and the price of electric vehicles overall."
In terms of BEV truck sales, China leads the way, partly because the Chinese government has provided the most funding to the industry. In 2021, China shipped just short of 100,000 units compared to approximately only 10,000 in the Americas. However, by 2023 the Americas will overtake, with BEV pickup trucks playing a role led by the Ford F-150 and Tesla Cybertruck.
In terms of long-haul vehicles (both trucks and buses), battery-electric is also ahead, but fuel cells still have a fighting chance in this segment of the market. Right out to 2030, the long haul market will be dominated by diesel. However, fuel cells are forecast to have a much larger share of the market relative to batteries. The reason for this is that long-haul battery electric technology does not have the same cost advantage over fuel cell that it does in short-haul urban transport.
However, total cost of ownership analysis shows that long-haul battery vehicles do still have lower vehicle, running and infrastructure costs than fuel cells.