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It's time to be VERY long LiDAR Stocks
As automakers start to install LiDAR technology onto their vehicles, the makers of LiDAR hardware like Luminar $LAZR, Innoviz $INVZ, Outster $OUST, Velodyne $VLDR, and Aeva $AEVA will start seeing sales growth like never before.

While true self-driving will be restricted to Waymo $GOOGL and Cruise $GM, automakers installing LiDAR tech on vehicles are looking to utilizing the technology to provide more advanced hands-free driving systems in the meantime. With more people commuting to the office these days, car buyers prioritizing self-driving capabilities are flocking to $TSLA in hopes of getting the Autopilot and FSD Beta software. While those two software programs have helped differentiate Tesla from the rest of the market, as more automakers start incorporating LiDAR hardware on their vehicles, Tesla's self-driving capabilities will become inferior to the market.

For evidence of automakers starting to incorporate LiDAR tech on their vehicles, here are a few examples:
  • November 2022, Luminar begins production and shipments of LiDAR units to Chinese automaker SAIC Motors
  • BMW is able to offer hands-free highway-driving package on its 2024 BMW 7 Series thanks to Innoviz's LiDAR tech
  • Luminar's automotive clients are known for paying a premium to Luminar for their LiDAR tech

The order from automakers are starting to flood in. Overtime, the demand for LiDAR units will swell. While the majority of LiDAR players are focused on the automotive industry, Ouster is pursuing opportunities outside the auto industry. These opportunities include autonomous mining trucks and autonomous forklifts. Ouster has its own LiDAR for automotive products called DF but hasn't had any major orders from automakers yet. Some experts are optimistic on the sales success of DF because it's low cost, solid state, and digital, allowing it to stand out in the industry.

While all LiDAR stocks are expected to rise with growing enthusiasm for the industry, at the end of the day, the producer with the most orders will reap the economies of scale and reach profitability sooner. While the odds look to be Luminar's favor, we can't underestimate the potential of other competing firms.

Automakers are finally embracing lidar sensors. A few startups look like market-share winners
After years of talk — and a SPAC boom in the sensor sector — automakers have finally started incorporating lidar units into their vehicles.

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