Electric Vehicles

Honda Losing Faith In Electric Cars

Honda: 20 Years Before Electric Cars Take Over.
In a surprise statement Honda’s chief executive has forecast that his company will need to rely on China for its battery powered electric cars.
If Honda are willing to state openly that they have doubts about the future of electric cars what is the real talk within their boardroom?
The CEO of Honda has basically conceded that the car industry as a whole now needs to have a major technology breakthrough in the development of battery powered cars.
Honda are now seeking cooperation from leading battery makers in China to hopefully provide the needed breakthrough. The Chinese government are providing huge financial and business location incentives to companies to develop that technology and break away from the present limitations of battery pack provision of power for today’s electric cars.
The longer this battery/electric technology breakthrough takes the more likely electric car manufacturers are to lose out to the Hydrogen car movement.
There are severe restrictions imposed on any owner of an electric car these days, such as: range limit of vehicle, re-charging times of batteries, availability of recharging facilities in the locality, the cost of replacing a battery pack – said to be similar in cost to an engine change, a fact frequently overlooked is the need to carry around in the car at all times a very heavy battery pack which unlike a petrol tank does not get any lighter with travel, and finally, the very hefty premium loaded onto the price of buying an electric car in the first place.
Honda’s own forecast for the battery powered electric vehicle to become commonplace on the roads is now 10-20 years, if that really is the case, and other car makers have similar thoughts, it can well be imagined there will be no mad rush to provide a nationwide infrastructure of support/charging facilities in any country.
If other major companies do agree with Honda’s forecasts, how long before government the grants/subsidies are cut back or maybe disappear altogether?
Honda have their own very successful hybrid Civic and Insight models on sale now which have very good environment credentials, are not overpriced, very frugal on fuel and low on insurance costs; these types of car today are far more in line with the average motorist’s affordability and have all the support and servicing facilities in place.
Finally, let us ask ourselves, what is the reason for producing an electric car? The need to provide an electric car originally was to provide a mode of transport that did less harm the environment than current fossil fuelled models, fair enough, but what are we ending up with?
As no car manufacturer has produced total production costs we have no idea of these, neither do we know the full number of billions of dollars/pounds spent on battery development by car makers and governments, added to which are government grants of approx £5k per vehicle to the public as an incentive to buy an electric car.
And really finally, all that extra production of battery components have not been costed by way of carbon gas emissions produced in their manufacture, which just about brings us full circle.
Bill Williams

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