The electric vehicle, as a technology, is one that preceded the internal combustion engine in terms of its timeline of invention. Energy density and range of travel were two of the prime limiting factors in the proliferation of electric technology when it was first developed. The internal combustion engine compensated for those limitations, and manufacturing and customer demand of that technology has continued to expand until the present day.
What is often not discussed about the internal combustion engine, is the adverse global effects of the mechanism of the engine. As the name describes, the engine operates on the release of potential energy from the combustion of organic fossil fuels, a finite resource. The release of energy powers a shaft that ultimately turns the wheels and propels the vehicle forward. Once the combustion reaction is completed, the exhaust gases are emitted into the atmosphere. Within those exhaust gases are carbon dioxide, and other toxins such as sulfur, that can react with water to generate acids in the atmosphere that precipitate onto the Earth when it rains. The atmosphere has ultimately degenerated with the increase in internal combustion vehicles in our transport systems.
Environmentally conscious technology and discovery has now enabled the former limitations of the electric vehicle to be overcome, and for the production of electric vehicles to be technologically and economically feasible. Companies such as Tesla, Volkswagen AG, Daimler AG and the Toyota Motor Corporation have made electric vehicles that are comparable in performance to vehicles with internal combustion engine mechanisms. As customers have become increasingly aware of the performance and availability of the electric vehicle, sales of the technology have begun to rise. Additionally, in regions such as the United States, there are infrastructure changes that are enabling cross country travel with an electric vehicle. Travel range is no longer a limitation. According to a market survey conducted by Allied Market Research, the anticipated growth rate of electric vehicle sales is expected to be 22.6% from 2020-2027. The estimated value of the sales is forecast to be approximately $802 billion dollars.
The forecast is influenced by the perceived and actual value of the electric vehicle. With higher performance, no fuel is needed (in some instances, some homeowners charge their cars with solar power), and no environmental emissions, electric vehicles are becoming the winners of personal transportation. With all new technologies, there’s a cost curve to overcome, and companies like Tesla have managed to overcome these limitations by developing cars that are comparable in price point to mid-sized sedans. The costs will continue to be reduced in time. Currently, the Covid-19 pandemic has affected manufacturing supply chains for electric vehicles. Alternative pathways for sourcing relevant parts are being worked out by the manufacturers.
According to the segments of the global electric vehicle market, the dominant growth is expected to be seen in the battery electric vehicle, with the hybrid electric vehicle a close second in the group. While North America will be the largest global market of electric vehicles with a local growth rate of 27.5% across the forecast timespan, the Asia-Pacific region will also show sustained growth as it contributes to more than half of the global sales.