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Outlooking the Outlooks for EVs in the Global Passenger Car Fleet

08.18.17 | Blog | By:

It seems electric vehicles (EVs) are near universally touted as THE and even in some quarters THE ONLY legitimate low carbon transport solution primarily for the light-duty car fleet (but some also advocate for the heavy-duty fleet as well). Projections about EVs’ future, at least in the media, are rather rosy, as is the press coverage. And, NGOs are other advocates are pushing hard for policies around the world that would require consumers to purchase EVs. Since IEA just released its annual EV outlook, I decided to take an in-depth look at EVs using this and other data for the June report which will analyze:

  • Where EVs stand today
  • The impact of policies on the market
  • Projections on when EVs will reach parity with internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs)
  • What it will take in the EV market to meet 2°C targets under the Paris Agreement
  • Projections of EV penetration into the light-duty fleet

These issues are explored below. In summary, the EV fleet is growing but still only make up 0.2% of the passenger car fleet. Policies, decreasing battery technology costs which drive down vehicle costs and consumer interest could accelerate this trajectory and many in the oil and investment banking industries, as well as NGOs, expect that to happen with the market taking off sometime in the 2025-2030 timeframe (depending on the analysis). But it could go in the other direction as well, especially if EV costs do not reach parity with ICEVs quickly enough. And, as presented in this report, that is a must for consumers who largely are not willing to pay extra for the technology (and don’t think they should have to).

Future Fuels Outlook clients read more here.


Tammy Klein is a consultant and strategic advisor providing market and policy intelligence and analysis on transportation fuels to the auto and oil industries, governments, and NGOs. She writes and advises on petroleum fuels, biofuels, alternative fuels, automotive fuels, and fuels policy.

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