Among electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers, Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) remains the undisputed king. However, there are a number of other EV stocks lurking on Wall Street looking to dethrone chief executive officer Elon Musk and his empire.
Of course, Tesla just opened a brand new manufacturing plant outside of Berlin, Germany that will employ 12,000 people and produce 500,000 vehicles per year going forward. In turn, the firm hopes to produce 20 million EVs per year by 2030. Furthermore, the German plant opened just after the company announced that it has received approval to expand its existing plant in Shanghai, China. Moreover, it was recently reported that Tesla is exploring a possible stock split, as well as a special dividend to shareholders.
In other words, Tesla is firing on all cylinders — and that continues to be good news for shareholders. Specifically, TSLA stock is up 40% over the past six months — including a 24% gain in the last month.
However, as successful as Elon Musk and Tesla have been, there are numerous EV firms nipping at Tesla’s heels looking to take market share from the company. So, with that in mind, here are three up-and-coming EV stocks that I think could topple Tesla.
Now, let’s dive in and take a closer look at each one.
EV Stocks to Watch: Lucid Motors (LCID)
The company that is most often mentioned as the one that could dethrone Tesla is Newark, California-based Lucid Motors.
The company is run by CEO Peter Rawlinson, who previously worked at Tesla. That said, Lucid is competing directly against Tesla in the market for luxury EVs, and it already boasts a superior battery to the ones used by Tesla. In fact, Lucid’s first electric vehicle — the Lucid Air — has an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certified driving range of 517 miles. That is 20% more than the Tesla Model S Plaid. And it was one of the reasons the Lucid Air was named Motor Trend’s 2022 Car of the Year.
Of course, Lucid Air has a long way to go to catch Tesla in terms of production. The Lucid Air sedan only began production last fall, and the company forecasts that it will produce between 12,000 and 14,000 vehicles this year compared to 1.4 million expected to roll off the assembly lines at Tesla. However, Lucid is ramping up its production aggressively, forecasting that it will manufacture 50,000 vehicles by the end of 2023.
Furthermore, Lucid’s innovation is top tier as well. The company is bringing an electric SUV to market in 2024 called the Lucid Gravity, and its battery pack offers the fastest charging times of any EV company with the ability to recharge a depleted battery to 90% within 46 minutes.
So, with all of this combined, LCID stock is one of the top EV stocks to watch moving forward.
In many ways, Rivian is already ahead of Tesla. Last September, the company became the first EV maker to bring a fully electric pick-up truck to market. In fact, the company’s R1T truck beat Tesla’s Cybertruck to market, as well as planned pick-ups from both General Motors (NYSE:GM) and Ford (NYSE:F).
Early reviews of the R1T electric truck have verged on ecstatic, with Motor Trend naming it the 2021 Truck of the Year. And at the end of last year, Rivian reported that it had more than 70,000 pre-orders for its R1T truck. Additionally, the company already has production facilities around the world, and has plans to build a brand new $5 billion production center in Georgia.
Overall, the success Rivian has experienced with its R1T truck helped the company to raise $13.5 billion in what was one of the biggest initial public offerings (IPOs) of last year. RIVN stock skyrocketed on its market debut, rising as high as $179.47 a share on investor euphoria before pulling back to its current, more moderate level of right around $50 per share.
In addition to sales of its R1T pick-up truck, Rivian also has a lucrative arrangement to supply e-commerce giant Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) with 100,000 electric delivery vans. The Amazon arrangement has also inspired confidence in Rivian and its future ability to compete against Tesla and other established automakers. And while management has made a few missteps in recent months, the long-term prospects for Rivian and RIVN stock remain largely positive.
EV Stocks to Watch: Nio (NIO)
Nio is often referred to as the “Tesla of China,” and one of the leading candidates to supplant Elon Musk’s company not only in the Chinese market, but around the world.
Nio is making strides in that direction, expanding sales of its electric sedan to Europe late last year with plans to be operating in 25 foreign markets, including the U.S., by 2025. At home in China, Nio continues to beat its own production targets, most recently announcing that it delivered 6,131 vehicles in February, a 10% year-over-year (YOY) increase. In turn, this brings its cumulative deliveries for 2022 across all of its EVs to 182,853.
Furthermore, Nio has began the production of its new ET7, an electric sedan that boasts a 1,000-kilometer driving range on a single battery charge, besting the driving range of all other EVs — even the Lucid Air sedan.
Collectively, Nio stock has been beaten down in recent months, having dropped 33.5% year-to-date (YTD) to $21.06. However, NIO stock got a boost recently after it was announced that the company would pursue a secondary listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. And, Nio is also pioneering a successful “Battery as a Service” model where customers pay a monthly fee to swap depleted electric vehicle batteries for fully charged ones, cutting down on costs for at-home charging stations.
So while shares may be down, that just makes NIO stock one of the top EV stocks for investors to keep their eye on.
On the date of publication, Joel Baglole held a long position in GM. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Joel Baglole has been a business journalist for 20 years. He spent five years as a staff reporter at The Wall Street Journal, and has also written for The Washington Post and Toronto Star newspapers, as well as financial websites such as The Motley Fool and Investopedia.