Feeds

E-cars: unaffordable until 2030 (or later)

Big subsidies needed, even with double-price petrol

Build a business case: developing custom apps

It'll take at least 20 years for electric cars to become an economic alternative to the gas-guzzling variety, according to a new study.

The total cost of ownership (TCO) for hybrids and pure electrics will stay high for the next two decades – despite soaring fuel prices – because of their hefty price tag, consultancy Element Energy said.

At 2010 prices, the TCO of environment-loving EVs came in at a whopping £20,000 more than fiendishly fuel-thirsty rides, when you remove government incentives and manufacturer discounts.

And even in 2030, you're likely to fork out more over the first four years of the car's life, with the premium for pure electric cars dropping to £3000 and the premium for hybrids reduced from £6800 to £2400. The study was commissioned by the Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership.

The UK government is trying to halve UK carbon emissions by 2025 and, according to WWF UK, it'll need 6.4 million EVs on the road by 2030 to do it. It has dole out grants of £5000 for EVs, to promote electric and hybrid cars to the masses, most of whom are struggling under recessionary pressures such as not-very-good-wages and rising household budgets. The study does not expect wide adoption of EVs without monetary incentives.

The only thing that could help carbon-curbing cars along - even if fuel rises to £3 a litre, double its price today - is for battery prices to fall drastically.

"Battery costs are required to drop below £68/kWh for EVs with a 240km range to be comparable to the internal combustion engine vehicle on a TCO basis in 2025. This is considerably lower than what most experts believe is likely or possible with current technology," the study said.

On the flip side, conventional engines are predicted to improve, reducing the contribution of fuel costs to the TCO. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Flamewars in SPAAACE: cooler fires hint at energy efficiency
Experiment aboard ISS shows we should all chill out for cleaner engines
Brit amateur payload set to complete full circle around PLANET EARTH
Ultralight solar radio tracker in glorious 25,000km almost-space odyssey
NASA Mars rover FINALLY equals 1973 Soviet benchmark
Yet to surpass ancient Greek one, however
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.