Monday, August 28, 2006

EV future

Recently a couple of good news on electric vehicles have caught the attention of many people. However, the best bits are not readily aparent. Let’s clarify:

The new
Tesla vehicle got everyone excited. The idea of buying an electric car with high performance, a proper sports car, is interesting for many reasons. But the hidden joy is in the people that are backing up the project: guys from the “new economy” like Google’s Larry Page and Sergey Brin and other entrepeneurs from Silicon Valley. Will the “new money” rescue the auto industry of the future? If one thinks about the major developments needed for the massification of EVs (batteries and their electronic control) one can see where theese developments will be accomplished. And, just as happened with all of the major computer and electronic developments, we can guess what will happen with the price of these new technologies…

EV Smart
More good EV news. Smart will operate a fleet of EV Fortwo vehicles in London. The powertrain technology was developed by the company Zytek and the most evident joy is in the backup and interest by Daimler-Chrysler in this vehicle. However, the hidden joy is really in the prospect of an alternative form of transportation in big cities. The concept of “personal transportation” where one uses small 2-seat vehicles is interesting for the use of electric propulsion because these cars are very light and thus suitable for EV massification. Fingers crossed for the success of the EV Smart, and the interest of other manufacturers in the concept of “personal transportation”. How nice would it be if Toyota would materialize the
PM concept.

Encouraging inside information
The previous paragraphs were “old news” actually, except for the clarification of the hidden benefits. The really good news is that, according to a document from consulting company Frost & Sullivan, there is a projected increase of revenue from batteries manufacturers of 26.3 % for 2007 and a further 37.2% until 2010. These numbers are based on contracts for the next 3-4 years, so they are a reliable indication of expected growth in this business. But note that these are referred to hybrids, not EVs. However, the prospects of such development in this industry means that prices for batteries and control electronics will be lower and research in new developments will greatly increase.

1 comment:

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