Why Battery Prices Are Powering the Electric Vehicle’s Rise in Popularity

Have you wondered why almost all car manufacturers are doing the best they can to add more than just one electric vehicle (EV) to their list?

First of all, EVs put an end to the pollution we’ve subjected our planet to for over a century.

But they surely don’t offer some of the benefits ICE (Internal Combustion Engines) cars do. For example, some countries don’t have enough charging stations and EVs don’t yet have an impressive driving range.

They’re more expensive than a regular car too…

Not to mention the fact charging an electric vehicle doesn’t take just 10-15 minutes of your time, but more. So, they are not yet perfect for long-distance driving since you need to spend at least an hour at a charging station.

But could EV’s rise in popularity be related to battery prices? Let’s find out.

Innovation Is Lowering Battery Prices

The last five years has brought massive innovation to some domains. The battery is one of them, as new chemistry and manufacturing processes have been implemented.

The results speak for themselves.

In 2009, lithium-ion battery packs were priced at $1,300 per KWh.

Today, they are below $350/KWh and it seems they will continue to drop towards $100/KWh over the next five years.

That’s a massive drop in price which is actually powering the entire electric vehicles hype. The cars get cheaper and people respond to the opportunity.

Tesla has only sold about 110.000 electric cars since 2008. However, their newest model has already generated $13 billion and production won’t be completed until 2018.

According to Statista, the number of hybrid and EVs on the roads have constantly increased since 2009. Just last year, there were around 1.3 million electric cars in use by the global population.

Almost All Car Manufacturers Are Developing at Least One Electric Vehicle

There are over thirty electric car manufacturing companies in the United States.

From large and well-known such as Tesla Motors, Chrysler LLC and American Honda Motor Co. to lesser-known companies, such as Zap Jonway USA and Electric Vehicles International.

Even Apple is rumored to work on an EV with self-driving capabilities.

Electric cars are on the verge of becoming mainstream. The market share could be small at the moment, but as battery prices continue to lower, consumer adoption continues to increase.

If things continue down the same path, it is expected for EVs to account for 58% of light vehicles market by 2030. And things do move in the right direction.

Take for example the BMW i3. It has been released a couple of years ago – it’s a hybrid, not an EV per se – with a 22 kWh battery. Now there’s an upgrade available: a 33 kWh battery weighing the same as the previous one, with the same dimensions as the original one, offering a 33% increased range.

It’s a Good and Healthy Trend

This topic really makes you realize some people are capable of understanding and caring about global problems. You can notice global warming signs everywhere and the quick adoption of electric vehicles could be considered a step forward towards managing Earth’s resources more efficiently.

Granted, without investing big in renewable energy charging stations for EVs, things won’t change much.

But certain manufacturers have already started working on this. Tesla, for example, announced it might offer a solar panel roof as an option for their newest model.

On the other hand, there’s no doubt buying an electric vehicle is a good decision, even at this point.

The Benefits of Driving an EV

EVs are more expensive than conventional internal combustion engine cars. Fact. But let’s not forget we are at the early stages of mass production of batteries and other core components.

It is only a matter of time before EVs become cheaper than conventional cars: they have fewer parts and battery prices keep dropping.

Electrical vehicles are also fun to drive – even more than a regular car. Think of the lightning fast acceleration and low center of gravity caused by the battery packs.

As renewable energy sources get further exploited, we could even reach a point where having an EV won’t require you to pay for fuel ever again.

Wrapping It Up

How do you feel about this topic and the idea an EV could cost less than a regular car? Would you get one? Do you own one already? Do you feel like this trend will impact the global demand for oil? Let me know in the comments section.

If you’re passionate about driverless cars and electrical cars, you could subscribe to my weekly hand-curated newsletter. You’ll get the latest information about the mobility of the future.

Philipp Kandal