So the US isn’t going to hit 1 million electric cars by 2015? Bummer. Promised by President Obama back in his 2011 State of the Union speech, we are still far short of that sadly. Who might make it though five years after that date? Germany, at least according to one study released recently there.
The German goal of 1 million EVs on the road by 2020 is a goal many experts in that nation believe possible. If these vehicles follow in the same trends estimated by experts for other green car types, they could perhaps make it. Across the board, it is believed “hybrid engines will make up about 8 percent of German vehicles, or 4 million of an estimated 47 million cars, in 2020. This is followed by electric engines with approximately 3.9 percent, or 1.8 million vehicles, including plug-in hybrids whose batteries can also be charged via the national grid. Experts estimate that fuel cell vehicles could achieve a market share of 1.3 percent, which would amount to nearly 600,000 vehicles. Including gas-driven vehicles, alternative drive trains would thus number 8.4 million by 2020, a market share of around 18 percent.”
Here’s the catch though – only 6,000 or so electric cars have thus far sold there. How do you get that to 1 million in just seven years? It is the usual issues which need to be overcome that plague this car type regardless of what nation it might be in – range of the vehicles themselves, costs associated with with a full scale rollout and a lack of incentives for energy providers to “foster the development of electro-mobility” that plays out as a lack of adequate charging infrastructure due to it not being lucrative for those who would build it out.
You will also need more electric car offerings that offer different levels of comfort, pricing and performance. By the end of the year, for example, BMW’s i3 will be one of the first to attempt to tackle these items.
“One million vehicles still seems achievable in Germany by the year 2020,” said Marko Kolbe , Senior Manager Investor Consulting – Mechanical & Electronic Technologies at Germany Trade & Invest, in a statement. “This is going to lead to opportunities not only for the supply industry but also the automotive industry.”
So the big question here – if the U.S. can’t get it done by 2015, and Germany thinks it can by 2020, what’s the difference going on here? If you have a thought on this, we’d love to hear it in the comments below.