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Auto Roundup: STLA

Jul 26, 2023

With the electric vehicle (EV) revolution gathering pace with each passing day, legacy automakers are stepping up e-mobility investments, introducing new models and setting ambitious targets to electrify their fleet. Italian-American auto giant Stellantis STLA took a significant step forward in its electrification journey by partnering with AGI, a leading infrastructure solutions provider. Germany-based auto giant Volkswagen VWAGY opened pre-orders for the ID.7 electric sedan in Europe, starting at around $62,000.

Meanwhile, U.S. legacy automaker General Motors GM is set to close its Arizona IT Innovation Center at the end of October, leading to 940 job cuts.

On the earnings front, Advance Auto Parts AAP and Arcimoto FUV released second- quarter 2023 results last week. The auto parts retailer not just missed earnings estimates but also witnessed a sharp decline on a yearly basis. Discouragingly, it also slashed its full-year EPS forecast. Meanwhile, the maker of specialty electric three-wheeled vehicles, witnessed sales growth and narrower loss on a yearly basis.

Advance Auto delivered adjusted earnings of $1.43 per share for second-quarter 2023, down 62% from the year-ago quarter's figure. The reported figure also fell short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.72 per share. It generated net revenues of $2,686 million, which topped the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2,671 million on lower-than-expected comps decline. Comparable store sales dropped 0.6%. We projected a decline of 0.7%. The top line increased 0.8% year over year.

Advance Auto estimates 2023 net sales in the band of $11.25-$11.35 billion, up from the previous guided range of $11.2-$11.3 billion. Comparable store sales are projected within a range of negative 0.5% to positive 0.5%. Adjusted operating income margin is envisioned in the range of 4-4.3%, down from 5-5.3% guided earlier. Earnings are forecast between $4.50 per share and $5.10 per share, down from the prior estimate of $6-$6.50 per share.

Stellantis joined forces with AGI to bolster the electrification of its vast U.S. dealership network, spanning more than 2,600 sites, by providing state-of-the-art electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) for charging.AGI, with its rich legacy of over 50 years in branded infrastructure implementation, has emerged as one of the most seasoned and adept providers of nationwide EVSE turnkey program execution. This partnership is poised to be a game-changer, ensuring that Stellantis’ dealerships are equipped with the best in EV charging infrastructure.

AGI's prowess in electrical engineering, project management, fabrication and maintenance will be indispensable for Stellantis’ dealers, propelling them toward EV readiness. This partnership further enriches Stellantis' U.S. portfolio of EV infrastructure and training partners. It aligns perfectly with Stellantis' ambitious "Dare Forward 2030" strategy, which targets 100% passenger car battery electric vehicle sales mix in Europe and a 50% mix in the United States by 2030.

General Motors is set to trim 940 workers after the closure of the Arizona IT Innovation Center. Per the email obtained by the Detroit Free Press, Stacy Lynett, vice president of Information and Digital Technology GM, wrote that the company decided to cease information and digital technology operations at the Arizona IT Innovation Center at the end of October. The move will help the company optimize its innovation center footprint and gain the efficiency and effectiveness it needs.

Lynett added that all information and digital technology jobs are being eliminated at the center to streamline operations and allow GM to focus on its growth areas. Laid-off employees can apply for other openings at the company and the company will provide outplacement support. Employees who have worked for at least one year will be eligible for a severance package.

Arcimoto’s second-quarter 2023 revenues were up 17% year over year to $1.76 million. First-half revenues surged 45% year over year to $3.1 million compared with $2.1 million in the corresponding period of 2022. In the quarter under review, the company incurred a net loss of around $13.2 million, translating to $1.71 per share, which narrowed from $17.4 million, or $8.80 per share, in the corresponding period of last year. Arcimoto produced 94 new fun utility vehicles (FUVs) in the first half of the year and reached a significant milestone by rolling out its 1,000th vehicle in June 2023.

Last week, Arcimoto joined forces with MATBOCK to provide electrical systems architecture and energy storage solutions for hybrid-electric tactical vehicles. This partnership empowers MATBOCK to focus on delivering innovative technology for specific U.S. Department of Defense operations. As part of its tactical electric vehicle program launched in 2022, MATBOCK is incorporating cutting-edge battery, propulsion and exportable power solutions. This collaboration not only underscores the integration of electric vehicle technology in military contexts but also aligns with Arcimoto's commitment to advancing green energy solutions.

Volkswagen’s ID.7 electric sedan, with up to 385 miles of WLTC range, is open for pre-orders for European customers. After ID.3, ID.4, ID.5, ID.6 and ID.Buzz electric van, ID.7 is the sixth largest member of the Volkswagen family. The upper mid-size electric sedan includes two versions, the Pro and Pro S and a teased GTX sporty trim with a dual-motor AWD system and enhanced performance.VWAGY calls ID.7 an “efficiency champion” because of its aerodynamic-optimizing design across the entire vehicle that enables average fuel consumption of 16.3 – 14.1 kWh per 100 km.

The vehicle has an augmented reality head-up display, a "Discover Pro Max" navigation system, Hudson alloy wheels with a diamond-cut finish and keyless locking. It is also equipped with standard assist systems for the launch, including Travel Assist, Lane Assist, Emergency Assist, Side Assist, Rear Traffic Alert and an exit warning system. European buyers can pre-order the ID.7 Pro for around $61,600. The placement of the electric motor, installed in the rear, leaves plenty of legroom for passengers, while the luggage compartment can hold a total volume of up to 532 liters.

VWAGY currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

The following table shows the price movement of some of the major auto players over the last week and six-month period.

Image Source: Zacks Investment Research

Industry watchers will be keeping a close watch on August U.S. car sales, which will be coming out soon.

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Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (AAP) : Free Stock Analysis Report

General Motors Company (GM) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Arcimoto, Inc. (FUV) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Volkswagen AG Unsponsored ADR (VWAGY) : Free Stock Analysis Report

Stellantis N.V. (STLA) : Free Stock Analysis Report

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