PARIS—The acceptance of electromobility is increasing at very low speed in most geographies, says a study from Center of Automotive Management (CAM). In relatively small countries like Norway and the Netherlands, electric vehicles have the highest market share whereas Germany despite ambitious intentions is only in the midfield.
Among the traditional automotive markets, France and Great Britain have the highest registration figures for battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) in 2015, registration of such vehicle categories almost doubled to still meagre 1.2 % and 1.1 % of all new car registrations. Germany and the U.S. can be found in the middle field with EVs and BEVs accounting for some 0.7% of all new vehicles. In the U.S., this figure was even declining (from 0.73% in 2014 to 0.66% in 2015). A similar trend has been observed in Japan where the market share was 0.6%. In contrast, acceptance for electromobility is climbing in China where the market share already has reached the 1% threshold. Driven by strong incentives and amidst a still growing economy, the market share is expected to climb further, the study says.
Another country that saw a remarkable increase of e-mobility acceptance were the Netherlands. Here, the admission figures for e-cars tripled to more than 43.000 units thanks to extensive incentive structures. With this number of electric and hybrid vehicles on the roads, the Netherlands rank third globally after China with 207.000 and the U.S. with 115.000 new admissions. Also in the top-five are Great Britain with 34.000 and Norway with 28.000 vehicles. According to CAM estimates, the global market for battery and hybrid electric vehicles grew by 75% to 560.000 cars, mainly on the account of China. To achieve sustainable growth in electromobility, it takes a combination of technological innovation in the industry and an overall concept containing a regulatory framework and financial incentives, commented CAM director Stefan Bratzel. The much discussed buyers premium falls short of meeting these preconditions.
According to the study, three measures are necessary to increase market share of electromobility: First, vendors should put more emphasis on the competitiveness of electric vehicles in comparison with conventional ones. In addition, innovations should be fostered that bring about higher driving range and lower battery cost; all these measures aiming at making electric vehicles more attractive at the markets. Second, the charging infrastructure needs strong improvements in quantity and quality. So far, there is a lack of solid business models for potential operators to justify the investment. Public incentives would make a lot of sense here, the authors of the study say.
Third, electromobility only makes sense if the charging energy comes from regenerative power sources a field where legal frameworks need to be created, the study concludes.
Center of Automotive Management: www.auto-institut.de
Article originally posted on EE Times Europe.