Electric SUVs Will Be Hottest EV Segment In Coming Years


It really comes as no surprise that electric SUVs will likely be a huge deal sooner rather than later.

All we have to do is look at the popularity of ICE and hybrid SUVs today, along with consumers in our segment practically begging for plug-in hybrid and electric SUVs (especially of the long-range, affordable variety) to know that electric SUVs will have a huge presence in our future.

According to Axios, via a new report by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, the U.S. and China are bound to see significant numbers of electric SUVs on the road by 2022. A substantial increase in EV sales in both countries is expected, and a large percent will be electric SUVs and crossovers.

Critics say that there is low demand for electric vehicles. However, if/when high demand platforms (SUVs/crossovers) are available at a reasonable cost with longer range, demand will grow exponentially.

SUVs currently lead vehicle sales in the U.S. and China. In 2017, the segment accounted for 42 percent of all passenger vehicle sales in the U.S. and 39 percent in China.

SOURCE – Data: Bloomberg New Energy Finance; Chart: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Let’s take a look at the projected numbers, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance:

Electric vehicle sales estimates for 2018 / 2022

  • 2018 U.S. EV sales – 314,000 (up 61 percent year-over-year)
  • 2022 U.S. EV sales – 853,000 (only 24 percent of sales will be sedans, the rest SUVs)
  • 2018 China EV sales – 750,000
  • 2022 China EV sales – 2.5 million (only 9 percent of sales will be sedans, compacts/subcompacts will be the majority and the rest will be SUVs)

More specifically, by 2022 Americans will purchase over twice as many EVs as that of today, with 52 percent of these being SUVs and crossovers. In China, EV sales will triple. Despite the fact that some 48 percent will be compacts and subcompacts, 39 percent will be SUVs and crossovers.

Bloomberg says by 2022, major automakers will release 65 new electric vehicles. The report’s primary author Salim Morsy believes that those in highest demand will be the likes of the Tesla Model Y, Ford Mach 1, Jaguar I-PACE, BMW iX3, and Audi e-tron.

Morsy also shares that by 2040, EV sales will have reached a huge “boom,” with a multitude of vehicles available. He specifically references German automakers and Tesla as frontrunners. As soon as 2025, German automakers like Volkswagen are promising 80 electric models, with BMW at 47, and Daimler at 10.

Source: Axios

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37 Comments on "Electric SUVs Will Be Hottest EV Segment In Coming Years"

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By 2022, Tesla alone would sell 853,000 electric vehicles in the US. Other manufactures will add another 853,000 to the mix, totaling around 1.5 million electric vehicle sales in the US.

You must be a TSLA short. It is common wisdom that Tesla will sell 3 million cars in 2021.

You both must be a super Tesla shorts! 3 million are less than one percent of the US population.

We all know that everyone will buy a Tesla in 2021, children included.

No one thinks about what will happen when the RV mod of the Tesla Semi takes off. Everybody will get one for the weekend.

Jesus in a Dump Truck

When Tesla opens it’s secret underground factory in December, it will sell 1 Million cars per day.

From article : “…when high demand platforms (SUVs/crossovers) are available at a reasonable cost with longer range, demand will grow exponentially.”

I agree with that provided those EV SUVs/crossovers have access to a convenient & reliable fast charge network for those occasional long distance trips.

Hence the upcoming Tesla Model Y is likely to become a very popular car when that car goes into production.

“I agree with that provided those EV SUVs/crossovers have access to a convenient & reliable fast charge network for those occasional long distance trips.”

In the near term battery attributes (expense, mass, volume) mean that a REX for large inefficient vehicles makes a lot of sense. 40-80 miles of AER paired with a small ICE REX seems ideal until battery advancements obsolete the REX. I believe Workhorse is planning on this for trucks and Rivian is planning on the same for SUVs. The challenge for these small startups is being able to produce adequate volumes to get prices down.

It’s such a vague statement that if you ask 100 different people to define what “Electric SUVs Will Be Hottest EV Segment In Coming Years” means to them, you’ll get 100 different answers…How long is “coming years”, US only or globally, pure EVs or is the PHEV Outlander included, etc…The short of it currently, there is very low supply of “affordable” electric SUVs, as automakers put more models on their showroom floors of course there will be more sales which translates to “hot”…

GM calls disingenuously referred to their Bolt EV a “crossover” at launch yet has distanced itself from that original claim…Canada offers up to a $14K incentive to buyers who buy them, if GM wanted to supply the Canadian demand, then it would make that statement true…

I like how the article shows the i-Pace as the example of an electric SUV. You have to hand it Jag’s marketing team, they told everyone it was an SUV and now it will forever be an SUV even though it’s just a hatchback with big wheels. The interior volume is less than the regular “car” Model S and its ground clearance is less than a Model S with the air suspension up. The reason it looks so tall is that first as mentioned before it has big wheels but second it has the tall pouch cells filling in all that space below the passenger cell. Tesla with their cylindrical 18650 cells are not as tall resulting in packaging that allows for a lower more sleek and aerodynamic ride. Jag couldn’t achieve that so they just decided to make it even taller by putting big wheels on it and call it an SUV. For example, the i-Pace is 4″ taller than the Model S but the Model S still has more headroom in the front. It’s the same for the GM Bolt. Passengers also sit relatively high because of the tall pouch cells under the passenger cell. GM could have… Read more »

Good points, but is it really any different than recent developments with ICE “SUVs” or crossovers?

People want the SUV look without the truck-frame rough ride, tippy turning feel, poor fuel economy and lack of interior space.

It isn’t different. I guess I’m commenting as well on ICEs. Some CUVs are more CUVs than car and some CUVs are more car. Ground clearances and interior volume in many cases are straddling the border with some cars and in some cases are even less than some cars. The I-Pace is an example of that. It is really a full size car with big wheels that looks like an SUV.

I guess my beef is that in the name of marketing many newer SUV/CUVs give you the interior volume and cargo capacity of a car but leaning more toward the worse aero and performance of an actual SUV. I guess all that trade off in performance and aero is that it is “easier to get into and out of”.

I-Pace is considered an SUV because it fits SUV dimensions, can go off roading, or drive through a river, can climb hills up to 45 degrees. Jaguar has demonstrated all of these as you will see when the driving review embargo is lifted Monday. I-Pace has good headroom in the front, not tight for anyone under 6’5″, and also in the back, which model S is tight in both front and back. Tesla had to mount the Model S rear seat very close to the floor because of the low roof height, and it is still too tight. The seating position in the I-Pace is upright and comfortable, both front and back, Unlike Tesla Model S and 3, which are both very low to the floor. Just FYI, I-Pace has the same interior space as a Porsche Cayenne, It is obvious you have not been in I-Pace by your comments it is quite large actually, with rear seat width only 1.5 inches smaller then Tesla X. I-Pace just has the wheels pushed out the the corners, and very short frontal area, as a result you get a car with much larger passenger space, but the overall size is smaller then… Read more »

“I-Pace is considered an SUV because it fits SUV dimensions” “I-Pace over a ramp, try this in any Tesla… Even Model X will bottom out the front valance on entry and departure.”

That all sounds very impressive but the numbers say something else.

Ground clearances:
3rd. I-Pace – 5.6″
2nd Model S – 4.6″-6.3″
1st Model X – 5.4″-8.3″

2nd I-Pace – 39.9″ – 38.1″
3rd Model S – 38.8″ – 35.3″
1st Model X – 41.7″ – 40.9″

Leg room
3rd I-Pace – 40.9″ – 35″
2nd Model S – 42.7″ – 35.4″
1st Model X – 41.2″ – 38.4″

Shoulder room
3rd I-Pace – 57.6″ – 54.6″
2nd Model S – 57.7″ – 55″
1st Model X – 60.7″ – 56.8″

Cargo capacity
3rd I-Pace – 25.3 – 51 (frunk .95)
2nd Model S – 26.3 – 58.1 (frunk 2.1)
1st Model X – 70.7 – 81.2″

So the I-Pace comes in 3rd in every category, even next to the Model S car, except in headroom. The I-Pace is a car with big wheels.

How come on ground clearance you do not show the I-Pace range? It also adjusts up and down? And on Cargo, you show I-Pace with seats folded up, and X with seats folded flat? Model X is a larger car, in Width, Length, and Height, so lets hope it has more volume inside, But X is no more of an SUV then I-Pace.

I-Pace goes off road, and through rivers, can Tesla do that? I saw Bjorn Nyland did a bit of off roading in his Tesla X, and got a hefty repair bill.

Lets remember, I-Pace is far smaller, then Model X and S in physical footprint, tighter turning circle, easier to park, etc… On the front seat legroom is a fraction of an inch smaller then Model X,

The only info I have seen on the I-Pace air suspension is that it is lowers from the standard setting. After digging I did find this. “Height-adjustable air suspension drops the I-Pace 1.6 inches from the standard setting at a stop for easy passenger entry and exit, lowers by 0.4 inch at speeds above 65 mph to further reduce drag, and can raise it 2.0 inches for off-road work.”

So it can apparently raise to 7.6″ which would put it in 2nd place behind the Model X. Put 1″ bigger wheels on the Model S though and it’s tie. Or put regular size wheels on the I-Pace. The obstacle course stunt you showed that I-Pace probably had the optional 22″ wheels which are HUGE. Gives it more ground clearance though.

I am not sure why you keep mentioning wheels, wheel size is not what determines tire height. On the I-Pace I ordered I took the 20″ wheels, because the ride will be more comfortable then the 22’s shown in the picture, but the tire height is exactly the same on both…

I agree with the point of what you are saying about SUV, SUV used to be a body on frame wagon that had higher clearance, but nowadays the term is totally greyed… You have Porsche making SUV’s, and even in our state the State Patrol has 2wd Tahoe that are lowered for patrol vehicles. I-Pace is not an SUV by true definition, and neither is Model X. But I-Pace has more off roading capability, and is being tested off road by automotive journalists as we speak. I-Pace can also wade through 19″ of water, try that in a Model X.

Heck you can do it in a Model S even. Most EVs are pretty good at running through water for short periods of time.


Thats about 12″, try 19″ in any Tesla vehicle… I-Pace is certified for 19″

“Thats about 12″, try 19″

When it is at its deepest it is a bit deeper than the front of the hood which without the body raised would be a tad lower than the diameter of the wheels. If those are 22 inch wheels then that was about 19 inches. If those are 19” wheels than it was about 16”.

Here’s the thing, and I’ve said it many articles. Automakers are marketing vehicles differently whether we agree with it or not. The original definition of an SUV is long gone. There are only a handful of body-on-frame vehicles left on the market, as well as those built on a true truck chassis.

Most vehicles today are of unibody construction and built on a car frame … even some of the most popular “SUVs” on the market. Yes, the lines are blurred. We can talk about performance and capability, ground clearance, size, weight, construction. However, none of it really matters.

If an automaker calls it an SUV, then when we report on it we will also call it an SUV (even if we don’t agree). Arguing over the details really is pointless and leads to nothing. It’s an electric vehicle and seems to be a very good one. We’ll know much more on that soon. What we should call it, in the end, doesn’t change its shape, functionality, range, etc. It’s just a name.

Many argue that the Model X is not an SUV either. Let just call them EVs!

Not nitpicking the title of your article. It was more of a comment on overall marketing of the car industry. I especially let it get a bee in my bonnet with the I-Pace specifically because Jaguar chose to market its performance against the Model X claiming they were in the same SUV segment but that the I-Pace had better performance for a similar price.

But I agree that if it is an EV and sells then it’s a good thing. Like what I said at the end of my first comment: “but hey, whatever sells EVs and gets them out the door is fine by me.”


I-Pace can realistically be compared to any Tesla vehicle. It is not as big as Model X, and cannot seat 7, but does have a wide range of capabilities otherwise, and is more luxurious with higher build quality then any Tesla vehicle, and also has a lot of more valuable options (IMO)

All of the full driving reviews will be coming out next week, you will be able to see many comparisons, no reason to take my word for it.

The Model X would have no problem with doing what the I-Pace does in that video. Plenty of ground clearance with air suspension raised.

Sorry, but there is no way that the Model X could do the same as the I-Pace in the referenced video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j3GiLZ3olY8. The approach angle is such that the front and back ends of the Model X would scrape; ground clearance is only one determining factor.

I think Model X will struggle with approach and departure angle even when raised… I-Pace can do this because the wheels are moved out to the corners, even though it is 14″ shorter in overall length, I-Pace has a longer wheelbase, this is better in hilly areas.

The i-Pace has great ground clearance with air suspension.


Absolutely correct. EV Crossover, SUV, tall wagons are going to be hot…

Actual SUVs are huge, horribly inefficient vehicles, hardly ever used for the the type of use they are best designed for. They are the absolute worst case for batteries. This is a perfect example of the fantasy of “having your cake, and eating it too,”

Fossil crossovers are popular now so EV crossovers are going to popular too… for a while. Eventually people will realise (I hope) that aerodynamics are super important if you ever want to hit the highway.
I assume that crossovers will gradually morph into (at most slightly raised) aerodynamic station wagons over the next decade, as consumers realise that having an efficient car not only means that you can save money on energy and battery costs, but also gain distance far more quickly while charging! I bet an Ioniq on 70kW CCS actually often gains kilometers faster than a Model X at a Supercharger, just because it’s so much more efficient!

Good aero and fast charging are the two most important and simultaneously most neglected metrics for EVs!

Couldn’t agree more Davek.

Good Aero optimization is like adding free range to an EV and this is why Tesla has class-leading Aero on their vehicles.

Also agree about plentiful, affordable and very fast-charging being critical to get people to make the jump into EVs which is why Tesla went it alone in setting up their awesome SuperCharging network.

Compact EV CUVs will be a hot ticket.

I agree SJC, especially ones with skateboard architecture that really maximize interior volume so that even a small vehicle can be spacious on the inside.

No surprise. People want SUVs.

I wonder if they took into account the progress of autonomous vehicles? A lot of kids these days do not have any desire to own vehicles regardless. Now add in the possibility that there may be many autonomous vehicles at their disposal, easier/cheaper than Uber. We might see vehicle ownership go down in the next few decades.

1. SUVs allow for higher margins (needed for Profitability an demand)
2. SUVs make it possible to hide the extra height from the battery (I personally hate sitting in the back of an Tesla). It is a trade off between aerodynamics and passenger comfort and so far manufactures chose aero. I hope other manufacturers figure out a better way in the future.

If you are honest neither the Jag nor the Model X are SUVs. They are more or less in a Van Style like Bolt etc. But nevertheless that design is the way to go for EVs in order to integrate the battery. Through the battery the all also get bigger wheels. I also once heard a statement from Diese (VW CEO) who said that all electrics are per se 7 cm higher due to the battery and thus close to a SUV seating position. So design wise but also economic wise SUVs are the choice to begin with.

I am still curious how BMW will work with lower height cells in their limousine models as announced. In the end they still need to provide a decent range. Same goes for the Tesla Roadster, which ist also supposed to be flat.