Growing demand for this year’s most anticipated electric vehicles is exploding order books and lengthening waiting lists.
The $60,000 Cadillac Lyriq SUV is the latest model to close its 2023 backlog. The automaker said it moved the Lyriq’s waitlist to the 2024 model, which is still open for orders.
But rising supply chain costs mean customers of the Lyriq and other electric vehicles can pay hundreds or thousands of dollars more for a vehicle that arrives months later than expected. This is especially true for companies that have had to cut their 2022 production forecasts due to component shortages.
It’s a scenario playing out at companies ranging from Tesla to Rivian to Ford. Longer-than-expected waiting lists — and wait times due to the state of the auto supply chain this year — have created a backlog of customers frustrated by delays.
Reddit is full of comments from disgruntled buyers whose estimated wait times have either been inflated by months or postponed multiple times.
A Rivian R1S customer said, “I pre-ordered mine last October and my expected delivery date was the first half of 23. And that was before Rivian drastically reduced its expected production numbers by nearly half due to supply chain constraints.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk issued a warning about rising prices and delivery times during the automaker’s first quarter 2022 earnings call in April.
“It may seem like we may not be reasonable about raising our vehicle prices, given that we saw record profitability this quarter,” Musk said. “But the waiting list for vehicles is quite long, and some of the vehicles people will be ordering on the waiting list extend into next year.”
Demand for the Ford F-150 Lightning is so strong that Ford has had to speak publicly about its resale policy, ultimately leaving the decision up to the dealership. The automaker has already doubled its planned annual production to 150,000 vehicles.
Meanwhile, fluctuating prices and availability of raw materials and other products are forcing some companies to manufacture fewer vehicles than expected. Lucid cut its 2022 production outlook to 12,000 to 14,000 units, down from its original plan to build 20,000 vehicles. Rivian also might not reach the 20,000 units it forecast at the start of the year.