EnergyTrend: the sky’s the limit for electric cars – in 10 years, these vehicles will become mainstream

published: 2010-04-02 14:50 | editor: | category: Analysis

BYD China successfully won the favor of investment guru Warren Buffett as he acquired 10 percent equity interest in BYD. This move reflects the growing momentum of electric vehicles.China and the United States have also placed much emphasis on the development of the electric car in field of alternative energy source.

Research institute EnergyTrend indicated that, amid rising oil prices and increasingly stricter environmental regulations, electric cars will jump into the limelight as the mainstream vehicle, and it is estimated that in 10 years, the popularity of these eco-friendly vehicles will open doors for some billions of dollars in business and millions of business opportunities.

According to estimates by EnergyTrend, the number of electric vehicles in 2012 will reach two million, of which, those that adopt lithium batteries will account for some 60 million units. By 2015, the number of electric vehicles will reach 4.5 million, and that of lithium batteries exceed 4 million units. And, by 2035, the production of conventional gasoline-fueled cars will be terminated as their eco-friendly counterparts become the mainstream.

EnergyTrend expressed that, currently, BYD is the vanguard in the development of global electric vehicles – the firm has decided to launch the e6, an all-electronic, 5-passenger car, in the United States next year; the vehicle charges through the household electric outlet for 7-9 hours. BYD hopes to increase its brand recognition in the United States, then expand its supply in the market; moreover, BYD also plans to set up a second production line for lithium batteries used in electric cars near its headquarter in Shenzhen.

In the United States.,including Damiler,GM both are planning to launch electric vehicle. GM will have hybrid and plug electric hybrid vehicles,such as Satium,Aura,Chevrolet,Volt next year while Damiler is focusing on Mecedes hybrid vehicle.

In addition to BYD’s launch of electric cars, Japan-based automakers such as Toyota, Nissan and Mitsubishi, are also actively involved in the research and development of electric vehicles; LUXGEN, a subsidiary of Taiwan-based Yulon Group, also has the technology to produce electric cars, and it is ready to cooperate with the TECO Group, and received strong endorsement from Hon Hai Chairman, Terry Gou.

Honda, Japan's second largest automaker, has also made plans to introduce its all-electric cars in the United States within a few years. Honda has always maintained that hybrid cars are the eco-friendly vehicles of the future, and argues that batteries and other critical technology required for an all-electric car has not reached maturity; however, as its automotive competitors in the United States and Japan have all invested in the research and development of electric vehicles, Honda had to follow suit.

Since U.S., Japan and Germany have all invested in the development of electric vehicles, what is the positioning of Taiwan’s electric cars? In particular, among intense competition from Chinese automakers, with Taiwan's domestic market size, it raises concerns about the profitability of LUXGEN, as it is the only player engaged in the development of electric cars. It remains to be seen whether this venture is simply another road of no return?

Yulon,a Taiwan based company,it’s electric cars will be in the assembly line at the Sanyi production site in September and it is expected to produce one set every two days, with an estimate of 120 units by the end of the year – this includes the LUXGEN7 MPV, off-road SUVs, and TOBE sedans. These vehicles will be shipped to potential local car dealers in China and other regions for test drive and auto shows.

In fact, at the time the LUXGEN7 MPV was introduced, LUXGEN has also started conducting the research of electric vehicles, and the firm has completed the relevant development and testing last year; these electric car models, with the highest specifications and standards among its same range of vehicles globally, are ready to enter mass production.
        
Consensus in the industry is that, with the funding through policies such as U.S. President Barack Obama’s subsidy of $2.4 billion for electric vehicles, and China’s subsidy of 1000 units of electric cars per year in 13 cities, there is limitless business opportunity of electric vehicles in the foreseeable future; this will also drive up the revenues from relevant components, which are expected to exceed that of traditional automakers by far.

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