The Future of EVs
The shift to electrified mobility started in earnest nearly two decades ago with the arrival of the first hybrid vehicles. Although most car buyers were not initially comfortable with the idea of a gas-electric powertrain, hybrids continued to gain popularity. Eventually, they served as a bridge to more sophisticated and sustainable offerings, such as plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and battery electric vehicles (BEVs), with ranges currently surpassing 300 miles on a single charge.
Nowadays, every major auto manufacturer appears to have a strategy aimed at an all-electric future. Many automakers are investing billions of dollars in research & development and manufacturing to electrify their global lineups to go EV-only by the middle of the next decade.
The key motivator for the auto industry's strong momentum toward electrification is the environment. Around the world and here in the United States, light-duty vehicles (passenger cars and non-commercial trucks) have been the most significant contributors of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere. As a result, state and federal regulatory efforts designed to reduce these harmful carbon emissions have mandated carmakers to reduce tailpipe pollutants.
As such, many manufacturers have announced plans to phase out the production of internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles altogether in the next 10 to 15 years. Leading the charge with the most stringent mandates, California's legislators have banned selling new ICE vehicles in the state starting in the year 2035.
All that said, we are only at the beginning of the auto industry's shift to electrification. The share of EVs in the U.S. is still fractional compared to the overall production and sales of automobiles. But as the electrification effort ramps up, BEVs could represent a much more significant portion of the American and global automotive landscape by the end of the decade. And likely redefine mobility altogether by 2040.