I think days are not far when the electric vehicle (EV) will be here on the roads around the world sooner than many people think. If we see the data, then we find that out of 100 million cars in the world, around 2.5 million are electric vehicles. But with costs going down and more governments encourage actions to cut the carbon footprint and fight urban pollution.
The Boston Consulting Group released a report estimating that hybrids and EVS would cut the market share of internal combustion cars by 50 percent by 2030.
Are electric cars really about to take over from the old-fashioned internal combustion engine?
There is no question that the automobile industry is undergoing a radical change. At this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show the major theme of the show was electric vehicles. Volkswagen said it would build electrified versions of every model in its range – including those sold under the Audi, Skoda, Seat and Porsche brands – by 2030. Mercedes’ parent company Daimler said it would have electrified versions of its own models by 2022.
Other companies, including Volvo, Jaguar Land Rover and Honda have made similar pledges. So, it’s a new beginning that we are seeing. These are undoubtedly ambitious plans but there are limitations too.
Actually, complete 100% electric vehicles will take time to come on the roads. Before they do come, the gasoline and diesel vehicles will become hybrids. An electric motor will become an integral parts in them. We can say, the gasoline and diesel vehicles will become electric hybrids.
A plug-in hybrid, for example, has a large battery capacity and is often capable of running entirely on electric power at least part of the time, though it will have a petrol engine as well. Similarly, Another type of plug-in hybrid, often referred to as a range-extended EV, is essentially an electric car with a small petrol engine that acts as an on-board generator.
In India, Maruti Suzuki, Toyota, Honda have already started selling these semi-hybrid units or call them mild hybrids. They are cheaper to produce than full hybrids, yet they can offer significant benefits in terms of performance and fuel consumption. Like auto stop & start is one of such feature. We can say that It is true that carmakers are investing a great deal of money in new electric models.
As far as fully electric units are concerned, Volkswagen, for example, says that by 2025, one in four of its cars could be battery powered. Similarly, BMW says it will be offering 12 pure-electric models soon.
There are several factors responsible!
The launch of the Tesla Model S in 2012 proved that electric cars could perform as well as their petrol equivalents and have a decent battery range (although at a high price). Since then the cost of lithium-ion batteries has fallen significantly, while battery management technology has improved, making that kind of performance more affordable. Secondly, anti-pollution legislation is being tightened in key markets. In Europe, for example, there will be new limits in force for emissions of carbon dioxide from 2021. India is already skipping stage BSV and directly implementing stage BSVI. Those limits are much stricter than the current ones, and they are based on the average level of pollution produced by a manufacturer’s entire fleet. So by producing zero-emissions cars, manufacturers will find it much easier to meet the targets. So the ultimate solution is to build more hybrids. Automobile industry experts say that by 2040 – the date when the ban is due to take effect – it is highly unlikely there will be any non-hybrid cars left on the market anyway.
Is the infrastructure ready to cater to the needs of electric vehicles? What is the alternate to petrol/gasoline/diesel then?
It’s Lithium!!!! Forget oil and gas; the future of energy belongs to lithium.
According to Bloomberg, by 2040, 54 percent of all new car sales will be for EVs. Millions of new EVs will take a big bite out of oil demand and displace 8 million barrels of transport fuel (gasoline and diesel) every day. But the biggest factor in the EV surge is what’s under the hood – lithium ion batteries. Bloomberg estimates that in the late 2020s, cheap battery technology will allow EV production to skyrocket. The key is lithium, ‘white petroleum’, which is quickly becoming the world’s most sought-after mineral. The world is going to need mounds of lithium, from all over the world, to satisfy the global hunger for batteries. A lot of those lithium batteries will be needed for EVs: in fact, major oil companies like Total SA have estimated that 20 million EVs will be on the road by 2030, and they’ll need enough batteries to power 200 million cell phones. That’s 1.2 million tons, six times current production levels. EVs wouldn’t function without lithium ion batteries. That’s why Tesla CEO Elon Musk built a huge factory in the Nevada desert, where thousands of batteries are churned out every year.
What the Sales Figures Say?
In March 2018, more than 40,000 EVs were sold in Europe, a 41 percent increase from last year. Total sales for the year were up 37 percent from 2017. European auto-makers like Volvo want to concentrate on EVs, and plan on electric cars and trucks covering 50 percent of all sales by 2025. Porsche will be 50 percent EV by 2023. General Motors and Toyota want to sell 1 million EVs per year by 2025.
The Future, then?
The time is changing! EVs are going to replace the Gasoline and Diesel engines. Soon!!! Hope we will be able to make a better world than the one we already have!