Electric vehicles have been on the rise for some time now but with many countries committing to a ban on the sale of new internal combustion engine vehicles, the automotive industry is starting to shift towards an all-electric future.
The automotive industry is starting to align with environmental goals
More and more people are becoming aware of their carbon footprint and are making positive changes to negate it. Vehicles have a significant environmental impact, with transport accounting for around 20% of global CO2 emissions and around 75% of this coming from road travel. As a response, many countries around the world, including China, Canada and much of Western Europe, have committed to a ban on ICE vehicles.
These regulations are not yet a global affair, with major players such as the United States not yet committing to a ban, but if the rest of the US follows California and New Jersey’s plans to ban sales of new ICE vehicles before mid-century, then we could see the end of automotive ICE production.
Many manufacturers are already committing to an all-electric future
In line with the upcoming ICE vehicle bans, major car manufacturers have made a commitment to an all-electric future. In the past, the names perhaps most associated with environmentally-friendly cars were the Nissan Leaf and the Toyota Prius, as well as tech giants and EV pioneers Tesla, but many well-known brands are now leaving internal combustion engines behind and embracing EV development.
- General Motors will produce 30 new global electric vehicles by 2025, with a view to being all-electric by 2035.
- Jaguar Land Rover has stated that Jaguar will become an electric-only brand by 2025, and the first all-electric Land Rover is due out in 2024, with another five new models to be introduced by the end of 2026.
- Bentley has outlined a phased plan to becoming all-electric, with their first EV set to be released in 2025. They will only produce EVs and PHEVs by 2026 and will be EV-only by 2030.
- Cadillac will introduce their first EV in 2023 and will phase out their models for electric counterparts in time to be all-electric by 2030.
- This year’s Lotus Emira will be the company’s last ICEV, and they are moving straight to EV tech, with the plan to be fully electric by 2030.
- BMW hasn’t yet committed to a date for an all-electric future but is planning to launch nine new EVs by 2025, with electric versions available for most of their existing models by 2023.
- Volvo has outlined a plan for its range to be entirely EVs or hybrids by 2025, be fully electric by 2030, and even become a carbon-neutral company by 2040.
- Ford has just announced an $11.7 billion investment in electric vehicle plants and has plans for half of all their vehicles to be zero-emission by 2030.
Electric vehicles are the future, and these pledges demonstrate that the major manufacturers understand that. Manufacturers that haven’t made similar commitments are sure to do so in the near future, so as not to fall behind. The EV shift could also be a way for new and lesser-known manufacturers to make their stamp on the market.
New countries could take over as market leaders
While the choice and availability of new EV models don’t look to be a problem by the time of the ICE vehicle bans, they are still an expensive option. The cost of a new EV is set to be cheaper than a new ICEV by 2027 but, currently, the requirements of EV battery technology are keeping the prices up. Countries will no doubt want to vie for the position as market leaders of battery technology and will invest in research to do so.
The need for widespread, reliable EV charging networks could also present an opportunity for new businesses to make a stamp on the industry. Currently, the Netherlands has the highest density of charging points, but countries such as the UK are lagging behind if they are to be ready for their own 2030 ICE ban. Developing and delivering fast, reliable charge points for (eventually all) road users should become a priority for electronics businesses.
The future is certainly electric, and despite being a significant polluter historically, the automotive industry seems to be on board with the change.
About the author
Chris Parr is a Product Manager at Easby Electronics, a privately-owned supplier of electronic components with global market pricing, sourcing and supply.