Inclusivity shapes success in the electric vehicle industry

Research from McKinsey and Company shows how inclusivity could be a decisive factor in the adoption of electric vehicles (EV) by underrepresented groups

Everything that is sustainable incorporates a cycle. Often companies are interested in the initiatives they can implement as part of a circular economy, but the least obvious cause for concern in e-mobility is inclusivity.

The electric vehicle (EV) industry must be one of change, both in emissions reduction and social standing, to ensure it is equitable and ultimately, successful in decarbonising one an industry that poses a significant amount of stress on the planet. 

McKinsey & Company looks at sustainable growth from all angles, but one that perhaps might not sit at the forefront of people's minds is the effect that  consumers in different ethnic and social groups could have on the industry. 

The ‘S’ in ESG is an important e-mobility factor 

According to the consultancy firm, around 40% of Black consumers are ready or willing to make the shift from a fossil fuel car to an EV. This could provide EV firms with a significant share of the automotive industry with Black consumers expected to make up around US$190bn automotive revenue by 2030. 

It seems there are restrictions to the potential of automotive brands as Black automotive consumers base their decisions on more than the usual factors like price and product. More car buyers are looking into the equity incorporated in the process of purchasing an EV. Black automotive consumers are also concerned about charging and want to ensure that their communities are well-equipped before they make mobility changes. Targeting areas in which charging is hard to come by is a critical point of thought for automotive companies who could leverage EV charging to meet the needs of their customers. 

EV adoption is more than just electric cars 

As cities become more densely populated, micro-mobility takes a significant role in electrification. In particular, e-scooters have taken over from electric bikes since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. For both public and private, e-scooters acquire around 90% share of investments. During the period 2015 to 2019, e-scooters received almost US$7bn in investments. In the year 2020, while the pandemic caused havoc with industries, it received US$800mn, but now the industry is back on the incline as interest in micro-mobility grows—US$2.9bn was invested in e-scooters in 2021. 

Since 2018, the industry share has shifted. For the period of 2018 to 2022, the total U$8.4bn investment was spread fairly evenly across Asia (37%), North America (34%), and Europe (29%). Over the past two years (2020 to 2022), Asia has been lagging behind as North American and European countries grow their implementation of the e-mobility solution. 

The sustainability benefits of micro-mobility 

Emissions reduction is one, but there is much to consider beyond the decarbonisation benefits of micro-mobility solutions. Smaller machines means fewer components and less materials. As the industry aims for circularity, e-scooter companies also champion the ability to to repair their EVs for maximum operation and minimal waste. 

“We have a local team in every city that is responsible for charging and maintaining the scooters. In terms of the charging, we have our TIER Rangers. All of these are permanent employees, as opposed to gig workers, and are responsible for replacing all of the empty batteries from our e-scooters and in that process, they also carry out a simple safety check as well,” said Ailin Huang, Head of Sustainability at TIER Mobility in a magazine article talking about the company’s sustainability strategy. 

This sustainability feature provides great insight into the company’s achievements and how sustainability strategy is a critical part of e-mobility.


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