New Report Etches a 2030 Date on the Gravestone of Internal Combustion Vehicles

A new study, released in September by the consulting arm of professional services powerhouse PwC, projects that nearly 95 percent of the world’s new cars will be either hybrid or full-electric by 2030.

Hot on the heels of news that legislatures in several countries are pushing for a future ban on vehicles powered by internal combustion, the consulting company Strategy& has published its sixth annual Digital Auto Report. In it, the authors strongly believe that electric vehicles will enter the mainstream by 2025, then quickly hoover up market share over the next five years.

Based on current trends and levels of investment, the group speculates that charging infrastructure in American, European, and Chinese markets will grow at an exponential rate over the next seven or eight years, leading to larger acceptance of all-electric cars.

They go on to say that there will be a price tipping point at around the same time in 2025, not unlike when new electronic technology enters mass production, pushing down the price and putting the gadget in the hands of ordinary consumers.

The combination of these expected developments, assert the report’s authors, will cause sales of new cars with internal combustion engines to dwindle faster than the number of recent games added to the LA Dodgers win column.

In the three markets mentioned above, the report estimates that hybrid and electric cars will account for about 6 out of every 10 new cars shuffling off dealer lots in the year 2025. By 2030, the report pegs that number at an astonishing 9 out of 10.

Driving this sharp shift to electrification is the report’s estimate that, sometime between 2025 and 2030, the cost of battery electric vehicle will fall below the cost of combustion engines. To be sure, many OEMs are aggressively plowing research and development dollars into electrification, issuing breathless press releases and showing off EV concept cars at auto shows worldwide.

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A further driver of the expected electric proliferation is access to what this report calls “ZEZs” or Zero-Emission Zones. Most ZEZs will presumably be large areas of urban centres – such as the cores of London and Paris – which will be off-limits to any conveyance with an internal combustion engine. This is not a far-fetched assumption; several large cities have floated such an idea for future implementation.

We all know the day is coming when combustion-engined vehicles will be in the minority on our highways. The boffins at Strategy& have gone a step further, attempting to put some quantifiable measures to such predictions. The report, all 41 pages of it, can be found here.


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