Grading my 2021 predictions

Now that the hours left in 2021 are waning, I’m reviewing my predictions for the year to grade them and reflect.

  1. Big Sales Numbers for the Ford Mustang Mach E

Grade: Unclear / TBD

I’m having trouble finding sales data past October. Through 3 quarters, the Mach E was the 4th best-selling EV in the country, behind the Tesla Model Y, the Tesla Model S, and the GM Bolt. So, it is more likely to end up as the second-best-selling non-Tesla.

Nonetheless, the car has been a huge hit. It appears it may have actually been held back by its own popularity, with dealerships trying to sell Mach-E’s for $10,000–20,000 more than asking. We’ll see how things shake out, but even if I’m off on the metric here, I expect as they ramp production capacity the car will continue to grow in popularity. I’m also heartened that Ford (as well as Hyundai and GM) are now leaning into selling EVs by putting real marketing dollars behind them.

2. An Era of Surprisingly Collaborative Policymaking in DC

Grade: Wrong

My political predictions are frequently wrong, which is a nice reminder of how little I know. In this case, only the infrastructure bill passed with bipartisan support, and even in that case, things got weird (while there was plenty of Republican support in the Senate, Republicans in the House decided to oppose it almost en masse after former President Trump came out in opposition to it).

3. 5G Will Roll Out With Excitement, But To No Immediate Benefit

Grade: Right

Based on the non-scientific polling of a couple of friends with 5G phones, I think I nailed this one. When I asked them if they could tell the difference, one said ‘nope!’ the other thought it was faster, but also that it was hard to notice specifically day-to-day.

4. The Pandemic Will Still Be With Us in the Fall

Grade: Mostly right

Unfortunately, the pandemic is very much with us. I chose a bad metric in this case: whether the NFL season would kick off with a full crowd. It did actually have a full crowd, but we are far from normal now — I actually ended up going to an NFL game last week to avoid bringing covid home for Christmas, and my New Year’s Eve plans were also canceled because of the pandemic.

5. This Fourth of July Will Be An EPIC Party

Grade: Right

July 4th landed in that sweet spot before the newer variants emerged, so a lot of folks were footloose and fancy-free. Unfortunately, that meant a lot of fireworks as well. While I don’t have good direct data on fireworks injuries (apparently I need to focus on selecting better metrics since they seem to be reported in Q2 of the following year), browsing the news clippings it does seem that observers believed that fireworks were much more intense than normal.

So tallying things up, that’s three right or mostly right, one TBD, and one wrong — my best score yet I believe!

Next week, I’ll be back to share my predictions for the upcoming year.

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Ian Adams

Ian Adams

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I work at Evergreen Climate Innovations in Chicago. I’m passionate about clean energy, innovation, and market driven solutions.