PwC: ‘There Is No Doubt That EVs Are Here to Stay’


PwC recently conducted its ‘Electric Vehicle Survey 2012’ in order to assess the global electric vehicle (EV) markets, and a key takeaway is that more charging stations and battery-swap locations will be necessary to develop a ‘sustainable EV infrastructure.’

‘Continued investment to improve upon the electric vehicle value chain, along with the pace of advancement in competing alternative fuel solutions, will ultimately determine the level of success EVs are able to achieve,’ says Brandon Mason, a senior analyst with PwC's Autofacts group. ‘While we don't expect one to be parked in every driveway anytime soon, there is no doubt that EVs are here to stay.’

About a quarter of survey respondents said one public station for every 20 EVs is an ideal ratio, while 20% percent indicated one station for every five vehicles is ideal. Approximately 80% of respondents also indicated that a charging time of 30 minutes or less is considered fast charging for EVs.

In terms of price, nearly 46% of respondents said long-term total cost of ownership savings is the most likely reason consumers would be willing to pay an up-front premium for an EV, PwC says. Most survey respondents indicated that the premium would need to be under $5,000.

‘Automakers [are accelerating] their efforts to find solutions to reduce costs for battery, alternative drivetrain and the vehicle overall,’ says Oliver Hazimeh , automotive cleantech transportation leader at PwC. ‘Passing high initial development costs on to the consumer is not a long-term option, as it is not viable to rely on long-term government incentives. Auto companies need to deploy smart vehicle and technology platforms and global partnerships to achieve economies of scale.’

Survey respondents indicated global collaboration (26.6%) will lead the development and production of EVs and supporting technologies by 2020. Respondents said China will lead by 2020 (25.9%). Automakers are working to find a balance between production and consumer demands, and the trend is to build where you sell. Automakers planning for long-term success will likely have the competitive edge, PwC says.

Overall, Autofacts anticipates that EVs' market share will reach 6.3% by 2020. As municipalities continue to work with the private sector to meet future demands and develop ‘smart cities,’ finding the ideal ratio between integrated public charging stations and the number of EVs on the road is a prevailing challenge when investing in existing and future infrastructure.

For more details about the survey, click HERE.

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