Tesla & CATL deemed the Power Couple to Recharge the US EV Market: Morgan Stanley

(Credit: Tesla)

Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas deemed Tesla and CATL the power couple that could recharge the United States electric vehicle (EV) market. 

In a note released earlier this week, Morgan Stanley writes that the United States is an under-penetrated EV market, whereas China is a fully-penetrated EV market. In addition, the United States has an under-supply of affordable EVs and cheap batteries for electric vehicles. Meanwhile, China has an oversupply of affordable EVs and cells in the battery market. 

The current political climate between the United States and China discourages Chinese battery suppliers like CATL from distributing their oversupply of batteries to the US. Even Europe is leaning towards domestically sourcing and supplying battery cells for electric vehicles. 

“In our view, this will require a degree of ‘westernization’ of Chinese tech to be palatable in the US given the rising protectionist sentiment (both in the US and Europe). At the same time, China is experiencing an over-supply in EV batteries and is seeking a conduit to offload (‘off-ramp’) supply via export opportunities,” wrote Morgan Stanley in its note

China-based battery supplier CATL might have found a way to offload its EV batteries to OEMs in the United States through Licensing, Royalty, and Services (LRS). Tesla seems to be the first company to collaborate with CATL through LRS. 

People familiar with the matter recently shared that Tesla and CATL are collaborating to develop a new fast-charging battery. Tesla also plans to use battery machines from CATL at Giga Nevada, which is currently in the midst of an expansion. 

Morgan Stanley’s Adam Jonas sees great potential in Tesla and CATL’s recent collaboration. 

“In our view, Tesla is in a very strong position to ‘on-ramp’ Chinese EV tech to the US. In leveraging Chinese manufacturing know-how, Tesla can deliver a $25,000 EV (Model 2) and drive EV adoption in the US.

The investment bank reiterated its Overweight rating and $320 price point for TSLA. Despite its forecast about the TSLA-CATL power couple, Morgan Stanley still acknowledges the challenges to EV demand in the near term. However, it still predicts that Tesla will be a winner in EVs long-term.

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Tesla & CATL deemed the Power Couple to Recharge the US EV Market: Morgan Stanley
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