QuantumScape Is Doomed: Why QS Stock is Heading for a Crash.


  • After surging and sinking earlier this month, it’s questionable whether QuantumScape (QS) will make another big move in the near term.
  • Over a longer time horizon, prospects are even more disheartening, as this EV battery developer burns through millions.
  • While perhaps worth a second look if it falls to the bottom of the stock market scrap heap, for now, continue to stay away from QS stock.
QS stock - QuantumScape Is Doomed: Why QS Stock is Heading for a Crash.

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QuantumScape (NYSE:QS) stock surged at the start of November, but has pulled back and is likely to retreat to pre-spike price levels. It is questionable whether this speculative growth stock will charge up yet again. Barring another short-lived shift back to “risk on” by the market, chances are that shares will languish at or near current prices.

Future prospects are even more disheartening. QuantumScape is behind the eight ball. Meanwhile, rival EV battery startups charge ahead toward the production stage. Unless the situation improves quickly, expect a slide to even lower prices.

QS Stock: What May Cause a Precipitous Drop

In its Q3 2023 shareholder letter, QuantumScape provided several pages of updates on its efforts to develop and commercialize solid state lithium metal batteries for passenger EVs. These updates included updates on product development, customer engagement, and the scale-up of the company’s manufacturing capacities.

But many investors, myself included, are searching for more. Continued vagueness about when exactly QuantumScape will move out of the pre-revenue stage has been a factor in the steady decline in price of QS stock over the past few years. However, a more precipitous drop may be not too far off on the horizon.

Why? In prior coverage of QS, I’ve talked about various competitors to QuantumScape, and how their progress could come at this company’s expense.

These competitors include established battery makers like CATL and Samsung SDI, automakers like Toyota (NYSE:TM) that are developing SSBs in-house, as well as small, fledgling startups like Solid Power (NASDAQ:SLDP).

However, well before even these rivals to QuantumScape manage to bring their SSBs to market, yet another competitor, developing batteries that are not solid but are nonetheless revolutionary, may beat all of them to the punch.

Our Next Energy: The Last Straw for QuantumScape?

For QuantumScape and its competitors, reaching commercial success may be closer to a decade away rather than only a few years away.

SSBs won’t be ready for the road by the mid-2020s. Instead, it may not be until the late 2020s to early 2030s that SSBs become widely used.

As mentioned above, however, another type of next-generation batteries (lithium-iron phosphate batteries, or LFPs) could become commercially available far sooner than that.

Specifically, I’m talking about the LFPs developed by privately-held EV battery startup Our Next Energy. Just recently initiating pilot production of its LFP battery cells, by 2025 or 2026, Our Next may have its most powerful EV battery (Gemini, offering up to 600 miles of range) in production.

QuantumScape has also been testing LFPs in partnership with its SSB tech, and says such a pairing could maximize cost and power benefits. While the evolution of LFP tech could ultimately be a boon for QS stock, in the short term, developments from companies like Our Next Energy could distract attention away from the firm.

The Bottom Line

Longstanding issues like QuantumScape’s heavy cash burn (nearly $350 million in operating losses and capital expenditures over the past 12 months) and dependence on dilutive financing will also continue to weigh on the stock.

Given the waning interest in investing in EV startups, QuantumScape could even experience a serious cash crunch, where it cannot dilute shareholders through the sale of new shares.

As discussed before, shares may be worth a second look, if it finally falls to the bottom of the stock market scrap heap. For instance, if shares fall to a truly discounted price, such as a discount to book value.

But until this happens, and as the negatives keep piling up? Keep staying away from QS stock.

On the date of publication, Thomas Niel did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Thomas Niel, contributor for InvestorPlace.com, has been writing single-stock analysis for web-based publications since 2016.

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