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Electric Vehicle Checkpoint: Tesla, NIO, Ford Cite Supply Costs as Challenge

See the latest news for the top stocks in the electric vehicle space including Tesla, Ford, General Motors, NIO, Lordstown Motors and more.

Electric vehicle giant Tesla  (TSLA) - Get Tesla Inc. Report increased the price of its vehicles in April, which obviously did not sit well with its customers. 

A Twitter  (TWTR) - Get Twitter Inc. Report user by the name of Ryan recently complained about the price hike, and surprisingly, Tesla CEO Elon Musk responded, blaming it the increase in prices on raw materials.

"Prices increasing due to major supply chain price pressure industry-wide. Raw materials especially," Musk tweeted.

At the same time, the Chinese electric vehicle company NIO  (NIO) - Get NIO Inc. American depositary shares each representing one Class A Report came out with reported May sales that fell 5% month-over-month, and cited the auto semiconductor chip shortage as a primary reason.

And on Ford's  (F) - Get Ford Motor Company Report last earnings call, the company talked about a headwind related to commodities at around $2.5 billion, which was up from the $1.5 billion to $2 billion that they previously anticipated heading into the year. "The rising price of steel had a lot to do with that," said senior portfolio analyst for ActionAlertsPLUS Jeff Marks.

"The new Ford leadership team has really changed the narrative around the company. It used to be a dinosaur in the space, but instead, now they've unleashed some very exciting EV products such as the Ford F-150 Lightning, which had over 70,000 pre-orders as of last week, and the E-Transit Van launching later this year," Marks added.

Ford is a key holding in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS charitable trust. Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells any stock? Learn more from Cramer and his membership team now.

Meanwhile, Ford is proving its profitability and the company said that they see EV and connected services as a $20-billion opportunity by 2030 as we move into the future. 

"I like a lot about what Ford's doing and I think it's still very cheap when you're looking at it on an earnings basis, especially compared to a Tesla, so we've been big believers in Ford and it's the largest position that we own at ActionsAlertsPLUS," said Marks.

Electric vehicle startup Rivian has reportedly chosen underwriters for an initial public offering that could come this year. Rivian is working with advisers including Goldman Sachs  (GS) - Get Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (The) Report, JPMorgan Chase  (JPM,) - Get JP Morgan Chase & Co. Report and Morgan Stanley  (MS) - Get Morgan Stanley Report, Bloomberg reported.

Rivian could seek a valuation of about $70 billion when it goes public, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg. Although no final decision has been made and the details of its potential listing could change, Rivian was valued at $27.6 billion in January when the company said it secured another $2.65 billion in funding from investors including asset manager T. Rowe Price Associates  (TROW) - Get T. Rowe Price Group Inc. Report.

In February,, Amazon  (AMZN) - Get Inc. Report started to test a fleet of Rivian electric-powered vans in Los Angeles. The move came a year after the tech and online retail giant bought 100,000 of the custom delivery vehicles.

Here is a list of the electric vehicle stocks to watch:


Tesla  (TSLA) - Get Tesla Inc. Report will recall nearly 6,000 U.S. vehicles because brake caliper bolts could be loose, potentially causing a loss of tire pressure. According to a filing with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration made public on Wednesday, Tesla is recalling certain 2019-2021 Model 3 vehicles and 2020-2021 Model Y vehicles.

Tesla’s filing with the NHTSA said it had no reports of crashes or injuries related to the issue and that the company will inspect and tighten, or replace, the caliper bolts as necessary.

The recall is not the first for Tesla this year. The electric vehicle maker in February recalled 135,000 Model S luxury sedans and Model X sport-utility vehicles because of touch-screen failures. In addition, German motor authorities in February asked Tesla to recall around 12,300 Model X cars due to what it described as "limited functionality" of the adhesive on a "trim strip."

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TheStreet Quant Ratings rates Tesla as a Hold with a rating score of C.


Ford  (F) - Get Ford Motor Company Report shifted into high gear after the car company, looking to take on Tesla in electrifying its fleet as soon as possible, was upgraded this past week by analyst Joseph Spak to outperform from sector perform. 

The RBC analyst said the stock is “still not overly expensive.”

Earlier this month, Ford unveiled the F-150 Lightning, an all-electric pickup, at a starting price below $40,000. It is at the forefront of the company’s $22-billion global electric vehicle plan.

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates Ford as a Hold with a rating score of C.

General Motors

General Motors  (GM) - Get General Motors Company Report shares extended gains this past week after the automaker said it will restart production at some of its North American plants that were idled as a result of the global semiconductor shortage.

GM will resume activity at two plants in Mexico, one in the United States and one in Canada this week following a move to shut them down amid the worst of the global chip shortage, which the carmaker said would ding its 2021 operating profit by as much as $2 million. A fifth facility in South Korea will be back online later this month. 

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates GM as a Buy with a rating score of B.


Electric truck maker Nikola  (NKLA) - Get Nikola Corporation Report posted better-than-expected first-quarter results. The company said that during the first quarter, it commissioned the first batch of five Nikola Tre battery-electric vehicles.

Last month, Nikola unveiled plans with Iveco and OGE to transport hydrogen from production sources to fueling stations that support fuel-cell elective vehicles. And this past week, the company said Total Transportation Services, one of Southern California's most prominent port trucking companies, signed a letter of intent to order 100 Class 8 battery and fuel-cell electric semi-trucks.

TheStreet Quant Ratings has no rating for Nikola.


NIO  (NIO) - Get NIO Inc. American depositary shares each representing one Class A Report jumped after the Chinese electric vehicle maker reported a year-over-year increase in deliveries of more than 95% for the month of May. 

NIO delivered 6,711 vehicles in the month, and has delivered 109,514 vehicles year-to-date. Citi analyst Jeff Chung upgraded the stock to buy from neutral and raised his price target to $58.30 from $57.60.

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates NIO as a Sell with a rating score of E+.

Lordstown Motors

Lordstown Motors  (RIDE) - Get Lordstown Motors Corp. Report didn't perform well this past week. Despite a solid bounce from the lows, the stock dropped 11%.

The decline came after the company reported its quarterly results, which reinforces the risk of some of these newer companies. The electric vehicle company lost 72 cents a share, more than double what analysts were expecting. And there was no revenue in the quarter. The stock is down more than 80% from its February high.

Lordstown said 2021 production of its Endurance truck will be half prior expectations due to a production cut.

TheStreet Quant Ratings doesn't have a rating for Lordstown Motors.


Fisker  (FSR) - Get Fisker Inc. Class A Report plans to develop the first all-electric vehicle for Pope Francis, part of the electric carmaker’s vision of teaming up with leaders it sees as conscious of the environment.

In a private audience with Pope Francis, Fisker founder and CEO Henrik Fisker and Geeta Gupta-Fisker presented their vision for the design of an all-electric papal transport.

The company plans to deliver this singular version of the Fisker Ocean to the Pope next year. The Fisker Ocean is projected to start production on Nov. 17, 2022. There are currently more than 16,000 reservation holders for the Ocean.

TheStreet Quant Ratings doesn't have a rating for Fisker.


Along with NIO and Li Auto LI, Xpeng  (XPEV) - Get XPeng Inc. American depositary shares each representing two Class A Report is one of the main challengers to Tesla in China, the world's largest EV market.

Xpeng shares rose this past week after the Chinese electric vehicle maker reported stronger-than-expected first-quarter results, including a sevenfold surge in revenue. Xpeng shares recently traded at $26.10, up 5.4%. They have dropped 47% over the past three months amid investor concern about the stock's valuation.

Xpeng debuted the Xpeng P5 smart sedan earlier this month, which the Chinese electrical vehicle maker said is the world’s first mass-produced smart EV equipped with automotive-grade LiDAR technology. LiDAR, or light detection and ranging, is a system that helps provide visibility for autonomous vehicles.

TheStreet Quant Ratings has no rating for Xpeng.

Plug Power

Plug Power  (PLUG) - Get Plug Power Inc. Report jumped this past week after the fuel-cell maker said it completed the restatement of its financial statements for the past three years. The company said the restatements had no effect on its cash position, business operations or economics of its commercial arrangements.

"For those who like hydrogen, the stock to like is Plug Power," TheStreet founder Jim Cramer said in an interview. "The company has been getting breakout orders, which I like. But at the same time hydrogen is at 60 bucks; it needs to be competitive with oil." 

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates Plug Power as a Sell with a rating score of D.


Shares of QuantumScape Corp.  (QS) - Get QuantumScape Corporation Class A Report dropped this past week after the electric vehicle battery maker reported first-quarter results that missed estimates.

The San Jose, Calif., company reported a net loss of 20 cents a share, compared with a 6-cent loss in the year-earlier quarter. Analysts polled by FactSet expected a loss of 7 cents a share for the latest period.

TheStreet Quant Ratings doesn't have a rating for QuantumScape.


Canoo  (GOEV) - Get Canoo Inc. Report announced earlier this month that it was appointing Tony Aquila, its executive chairman and one of its largest investors, to the role of chief executive.

"That's dead money. I'm sorry," Cramer said of Canoo this past week during the "Mad Money Lightning Round."

TheStreet Quant Ratings doesn't have a rating for Canoo.