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Though the recent trouble Tesla had with a car burning up after striking an object in a roadway may have marred public opinion (and the stock price) of the luxury electric vehicle manufacturer, it has done little to stem the popularity of either hybrids or EVs as a whole.
In fact, a report from Navigant Research on the 2013-2020 Electric Vehicle Market Forecast predicts that by the year 2020 6.6 million electric and hybrid vehicles will be sold annually and account for 7% of the total light-duty vehicle market. Covering three categories of EVs (hybrid electrics, plug-in electric vehicles, and battery-electric vehicles), the research predicts that all groups will see double-digit sales growth in the coming years. Fueled by consumer demand, government incentives, cheaper operating costs compared to fueled vehicles, a wider variety of available models, and decreased battery prices this growth is good for all involved: the automotive industry, consumers and the environment. With gasoline prices expected to continue rising and fuel-economy requirements gradually escalating, this win-win situation is great news to hear.
Palo Alto, California – home to the headquarters of Tesla Motors – is planning for the eventual popularity and ubiquity of electric cars in a different way. It is requiring all new homes to be wired for EV charging stations. Mayor Gregory Schaff says, “We believe electric vehicles are the future. You create no greenhouse gas emissions and that’s the future of automobiles. We want to make it as easy as possible for someone to own an electric vehicle.” Planning a charging station into an unbuilt home is much more affordable than the cost of retrofitting an existing property. Palo Alto has extra incentive to establish EV regulations as the location of many of the hottest next generation tech companies and relishes the role it is playing to pioneer municipal ordinances for cities and towns of the future. “We’re coming up with a whole series of things to make the city more electric-vehicle friendly,” Schaff said.
Electric vehicles are here to stay.
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