Jaguar I-Pace Flickr

Is the momentum of electric vehicles (EV) increasing or leveling off in the automotive world? The following events should provide an indication.

  • Jaguar introduced its first all-electric vehicle. Jaguar said its new concept, the I-PACE, is expected to deliver 516lb-ft of instant torque, 400 HP and 0‑60 mph in around 4 seconds.
  • Tesla entered into an agreement to acquire Grohmann Engineering as a way to increase total production output to 500,000 units per year by 2018. Grohmann Engineering will serve as the preliminary base for Tesla Advanced Automation Germany headquarters, with other locations to follow.
  • In the racing world, McLaren will double the electric range of Formula E race cars for the 2018 season, as the company begins to supply the race series with new battery technology.

According to Automotive Engineer, Continental says that combustion engine technology will peak by 2027 before electrified powertrains begin to erode its market share. More specifically, the tier one supplier predicts that by 2030, 69 percent of vehicles in mature markets (e.g., China and the U.S.) will be electrified as companies look to reduce emissions levels and legislation becomes increasingly strict.

Given all this information, what markets have the greatest potential for EV sales? An Accenture study identified nine domestic markets, in addition to the U.S. and China, that have the potential to generate significant EV growth in the next four years. These markets were analyzed to pinpoint the crucial distinctions that shape EV attractiveness, including Canada, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, South Korea, Sweden and the UK. The criteria for determining their growth potential includes researching the status of government regulations and subsidies, charging infrastructure, vehicle range and charging times.

The study divided the markets into four distinct categories based on the potential of the markets to drive EV growth: best in class, high potentials, hesitators and pensioners. The U.S. and China rank as best-in-class markets, because they show both high EV market size and growth. Furthermore, they have already reached attractive volumes.

Additional markets that are poised to join the U.S. and China in generating greater EV sales are defined as high potentials. France, for example, is receiving support from the French government in the form of EV purchase credits of up to $6,300, free charging station use and free EV parking. The French government aims to establish 2.7 million charging stations by 2020.

The study classifies Brazil, India and Russia as hesitators because of their small market size and expected low EV growth. As Automation World points out in its discussion of the study, the key takeaway is that multiple markets are gearing up for more EVs, driven by technological, economic and political factors. Automakers, particularly those heavily invested in EVs, should consider these factors and be prepared for such growth, including extending their manufacturing footprint.

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Ryan Lahti is the founder and managing principal of OrgLeader, LLC. Stay up to date on Ryan’s STEM-based organization tweets here: @ryanlahti

(Photo: Jaguar I-Pace, Flickr)