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A new J.D. Power report says that companies like Nissan are being overly bullish in their estimates of consumer electric vehicle demand.  (Source: Autoblog)
Report says that demand will be 7.3 percent by 2020, falling short of other estimates

Nissan-Renault Chief Executive Officer Carlos Ghosn recently made the prediction that electrified vehicles -- hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), and battery electric vehicles (BEVs) -- would make up 10 percent of total vehicle sales by 2020.  Other EV supporters have released even higher numbers of what the electrified vehicle market share might be at the turn of the next decade.

Not so fast, says market research and analysis firm J.D. Power and Associates.  According to its new report, electrified vehicles will likely only amount to 7.3 percent of vehicles sold in 2020.  That would mean that 5.2 million of the 70.9 million passenger vehicles sold that year would be HEVs, PHEVs, or BEVs.

John Humphrey, senior vice president of automotive operations for J.D. Power remarks on the less promising forecast, "Consumers will ultimately decide whether these vehicles are commercially successful or not. Given consumer attitudes toward such vehicles and barring significant changes to public policy, including tax incentives and higher fuel-economy standards, we don't anticipate a mass migration to green vehicles in the coming decade."

Price and self-interest will be the driving factors for slower-than-expected adoption, says the report.  States Mr. Humphrey, "Many consumers say they are concerned about the environment, but when they find out how much a green vehicle is going to cost, their altruistic inclination declines considerably. In the U.S., the number of people who say they’re interested in buying a hybrid drops 50 percent when they learn such vehicles typically cost about $5,000 more than equivalent models with gasoline engines only."

The report brings into question the billions in investment that the U.S., China, and other industrial powers are pouring into electrification research.  The Obama administration alone has offered $11B USD in EV-related grants.

It also calls into question Nissan's plans to quickly scale production of its new Nissan LEAF EV from 20,000 units in 2011 to 500,000 units a year by late 2012.  Toyota (Prius MPVPrius plug-in), Ford (2012 Focus EV), and GM (2011 Chevy Volt) are all betting on EVs as well.  Poor demand could force those companies to readjust their plans.

Another danger to electrified vehicles not fully explored in the report is the potential for China's dominance of rare earth metal refining to impede adoption.  China is currently cutting off supplies of rare earth metals to China and the U.S.  Electrified vehicles use twice the rare earths, approximately, than pure combustion vehicles.  Thus supply shortages could limit production.

The U.S. and Japan are reopening rare earth mines around the globe, but that is expensive.  And building a successful refinery for the metals can take 5 years or more.  Ultimately these costs will likely be passed on to the consumer, exacerbating the pricing frustration that the J.D. Power report points to.

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Work From Home
By Mitch101 on 10/28/2010 9:32:04 AM , Rating: 5
Implement a Work From Home program reducing traffic and rare earth material requirements.

Government should give tax credits to companies that implement work from home programs. Businesses also save costs because they dont require costly business space.

Less problems getting into work, less sick time because of those workers coming in getting everyone else sick, less kids getting into trouble because they are unsupervised, less distractions in the work place, etc etc etc.

The trick is to reduce the requirement of using vehicles and the majority of peoples vehicle use is getting to and from work.

RE: Work From Home
By Shatbot on 10/28/2010 9:39:17 AM , Rating: 2
China is currently cutting off supplies of rare earth metals to China and the U.S

Communism is amazing, it's already better today than it will be tomorrow. Although I'd say that's supposed to be Japan. The hand that feeds?

RE: Work From Home
By Murst on 10/28/2010 9:50:37 AM , Rating: 1
Implement a Work From Home program reducing traffic and rare earth material requirements.

Although that might reduce traffic, a work from home program isn't a sure way to reduce reliance on rare earths. You might just be swapping out car battery parts for communications parts, etc.

RE: Work From Home
By Taft12 on 10/28/2010 11:26:43 AM , Rating: 2
Only for workers who don't already have the infrastructure necessary in their homes. Since this is an internet connection and a phone line in most cases, that number is hovering around zero.

RE: Work From Home
By Souka on 10/28/10, Rating: 0
RE: Work From Home
By Ytsejamer1 on 10/28/2010 1:27:55 PM , Rating: 4
So you mean it would be a problem that individuals would eat at home, presumably something a tad more healthy than MDs, Dunkin Donuts, etc...thus becoming healthier overall, putting less strain on their company's health insurance plan?

In addition to not using resources for the commute back and forth, there would be a better quality of life spending that time doing other things at home or with family. Sounds pretty good to me all the way around.

RE: Work From Home
By Spuke on 10/28/2010 11:44:35 AM , Rating: 1
Implement a Work From Home program reducing traffic and rare earth material requirements.
The US Government is already supposed to be doing this for their employees but are leaving the decisions for who works from home up to local management. And most local management believes one needs to come to the workplace and does not grant work at home for hardly anyone. I know ONE person that works at home.

There tons of employees that can work from home, IT, legal, engineering, etc. Not only would it save energy costs but would save building costs as well. I understand some will say that you're just transferring energy usage to the home but....

1. energy saved by not driving
2. energy and materials saved by not building as much as needed before
3. energy saved going from huge buildings to much smaller homes (might be a wash in some cases)

RE: Work From Home
By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 10/28/2010 11:53:07 AM , Rating: 1
I agree. However, even though I telework, I still need my own car. So this might not save on the number of vehicles needed to fill consumer demand. I just use the car less. Rare Earth (not rare earths, people) would be required in the same quantity unless people would buy fewer cars. Most telework schemes are 1, 2, or 3 days a week, not 5.

RE: Work From Home
By mindless1 on 10/28/2010 2:02:43 PM , Rating: 2
*Average* people would buy fewer cars because the less you drive the longer the car lasts... till it's so old it is a pile of rust.

Driving less also means fewer gas stations, fewer gas delivery trucks, fewer other public infrastructures like roads are needed, or need less maintenance.

It all starts with consuming less, no matter what that something is we live in a machine powered world so there will almost always be a trickle down effect of fewer rare earth metals needed.

... then a bonehead administration comes along with a scheme to pay people to destroy cars.

RE: Work From Home
By FITCamaro on 10/28/2010 12:08:29 PM , Rating: 1
Less productivity from people sitting around watching TV while claiming to work.

More obesity from people not even having to get up to go to work. Or look good for work.

Lower employee morale from never seeing anyone during the day.

Yeah sounds great...

RE: Work From Home
By Spuke on 10/28/2010 12:27:29 PM , Rating: 1
Less productivity from people sitting around watching TV while claiming to work.
I agree with you most of the time, but this is just old generation thinking. Companies that already do this have things in place to keep people from doing just that. You STILL have to perform, whether or not you work from home. If you get nothing done, then you're fired. Besides, management isn't looking over your shoulder that 8 hours you are AT work, how does he know you're productive? Could it be by the results of the WORK you are doing? Companies could save money by letting some workers do their thing from home. Like I listed above, IT, legal, engineering and others don't need to be there everyday. With high speed internet, VPN's, email, and teleconferencing you just don't need to be at a central location anymore. Have your monthly face to face meeting and call it a day. You can always call that person or persons in if you need to. or they can simply just show up when THEY need to. And no they don't need a desk, use a conference or training room. Effective scheduling and management can make this happen.

RE: Work From Home
By mindless1 on 10/28/2010 2:10:56 PM , Rating: 2
Countered by less productivity from people sitting at work surfing the internet and posting on DT?

Less obesity because if you are at home you have more facilities possible to exercise instead of sitting at a cubical, you can fit exercise into your schedule much more easily.

You might be right about lower morale, it depends on the person whether they can schedule their time well enough to have more of it to meet up with friends, engage in hobbies, etc.

People without many friends in the area they reside in would probably be happier driving to work every day on a schedule. People who can't wait to get off work so they can socialize, not so much.

It would depend on your household residents too. Some people get along better spending more time together. Others need time apart.

I have to agree with Spuke though, if you are contracted or even salaried to do work from home all you have to do is meet the productivity requirements.

Having written this much, I used to work from home and almost never watched TV... do you know how bad the crap on tv is these days? It's so bad it doesn't even serve as tolerable background noise.

RE: Work From Home
By wookie1 on 10/28/2010 1:40:47 PM , Rating: 2
"less kids getting into trouble because they are unsupervised"

Wait a minute - I thought that you're supposed to be working at home, not supervising the kids and working a little bit in between! This is one of the key problems of working at home, eliminating distractions that you have at home.

RE: Work From Home
By mindless1 on 10/28/2010 2:14:05 PM , Rating: 2
Just being in the vicinity of the child, even if not supervising them much at all, they will get into less trouble because they know if something disruptive or questionable happens you might notice.

Think of it like posting a police officer on a school entrance versus not posting one. Which area is going to be more secure even if the officer never looks up from his newspaper?

RE: Work From Home
By Ammohunt on 10/28/2010 2:19:55 PM , Rating: 2
the problem with that goes against the greenies long term plans to huddle everyone in mega citys at the same time destroying rural or spreadout living in order to protect mother earth.

Big freaking surprise!
By MeesterNid on 10/28/2010 10:24:53 AM , Rating: 2
And so how about actually looking at market demand of these things instead of dumping cash (tax payer cash in some cases!) into it because it's politically expedient, but consumers don't actually want it!?

This reeks of the exact same mind set that causes people to scream about how we need to dump more money into schools because that would magically fix the lack of care that parents have and/or crappy/uncaring teachers.

So there is a pattern here:

1. Generate hype beneficial to your political agenda
2. Throw taxpayer money at it
4. Burry the fail, goto: 1

RE: Big freaking surprise!
By Dr of crap on 10/28/2010 10:36:00 AM , Rating: 2
HA - That is SOOOOOOO true.
But that is just what politicans do best - throw money things that don't need it.

If Govt Motors wants to sell Volt's - they damn well better sell.

RE: Big freaking surprise!
By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 10/28/2010 11:58:30 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly. As a US consumer, I want a car that is fueled by aborted fetuses. Since I am a consumer, I should get what I want. Okay, that might not be feasible, so how about one fueled by toxic waste? That would solve two problems - no more toxic waste dumps. And free hand guns for everyone! I am consumer, I demand that my demands be fulfilled! Yee-haa!

This is almost as bad as when they "legislated" lead out of gasoline. As a consumer, I wanted lead in my gas, regardless of how retarded your kids got. They should just stop trying...

And these pansies make a big deal about oil spills in the gulf of Mexico. Wait, don't we burn that much gas over our country in 5 minutes... hmmm, toxic something...

RE: Big freaking surprise!
By MeesterNid on 10/28/2010 1:37:49 PM , Rating: 2
I know, right! I personally can't wait when 30 million people in this country, half of whom I bet don't even pay any taxes, all of a sudden can go to the doctor on my dime! I bet there will also be like thousands of closet doctors that will all just come out to take on new patients. Emergency rooms are going to be awesome empty!

Don't you just love not having to think for yourself and have your government do it for you! They just conveniently take out a little money from your paycheck every month and you don't have to worry about a thing! It's perfect!!!

Right, because electricity to power these lawnmowers is generate from the empty space in your skull and not from burning coal, etc. And btw, that's all they did about the Gulf of Mexico, is made a big deal about, and even that took months.

Enjoy socialism, I hear it worked out awesome for Soviet Union.

RE: Big freaking surprise!
By Ammohunt on 10/28/2010 2:23:09 PM , Rating: 1
I can't wait for Socialism in the US i am going to change careeres and go into professional Protesting like a frenchman!

RE: Big freaking surprise!
By Moishe on 10/29/2010 10:21:28 AM , Rating: 2
I'm surprised at the shortsightedness of Western culture.

building a successful refinery for the metals can take 5 years or more.

Really? That's not very long at all. The fact is, the sooner you get started on a long term task, the sooner it will be finished. Some things take many years to complete. The trick is not to be into instant gratification and go ahead and do those things anyways.

We need more fossil fuel refineries and nuclear plants. Sure it might take 20 years, but that's no reason to NOT build them.

We need rare earth mines. Lets do it and stop letting our competitors get ahead. 5 years is nothing.

RE: Big freaking surprise!
By Reclaimer77 on 10/29/2010 7:17:17 PM , Rating: 2
I'm surprised at the shortsightedness of Western culture.

That's the same argument that's also used to not build oil refineries and tap into newly found oil reserves. 20 years ago they said "But that will take 20 years!!!"

But about the culture comment, excuse me? The "Western culture" outpaced the rest of the world in just about every category in a relatively very short time. What are you talking about? At 120 years old we had already eclipsed cultures that have been around for thousands.

What people don't know....
By Targon on 10/28/2010 9:56:39 AM , Rating: 1
Many people forget how toxic battery production is as well. If you move the toxic/polluting side of things to a country like China, people often forget that pollution is still being generated, just not here in the USA.

So, it isn't really saving the planet, it just moves the problem to another country.

Then you have the problem that the power grid is not ready for electric-only vehicles, so if people suddenly went to all electric vehicles, we would end up with rolling blackouts, brownouts, and other problems in many towns/cities. Now, how is the electricity generated? Coal, oil, and natural gas dominates the power generation industry, with very little nuclear, and a tiny amount from wind/water based generators. So again, it just moves the source of the pollution from individual cars to power plants. Yes, power plants might not produce as much pollution for the electricity generated as some older cars, but it is still there.

NIMBY, Not In My Back Yard is how many people look at pollution, and it is as good as sweeping dirt under the carpet. You have not removed it, you just put it somewhere you don't see. Eventually, the dirt WILL show up, and the problem will be a lot bigger than if you just cleaned things up properly the first time.

Now, there is something many people have not looked at, and that is also the improvements in engine design over the years. Since the Focus EV was mentioned, I can point out the regular 2012 Focus as an example.

The 2012 Focus will come with a 160 horsepower engine, and get between 37 and 40 miles per gallon highway. The Fiesta which has been advertised a fair bit has a 120 horsepower engine and gets in the 38-40 mile per gallon highway. Neither of these is a hybrid, so that really looks pretty good in my opinion.

All electric vehicles tend to be limited to 200 miles per charge, and many only go 100 miles on a charge.

By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 10/28/2010 12:01:22 PM , Rating: 1
Oh, don't say that about the power grid. The last time I said that, someone replied with a "Yeah, shows how much you know." and I was totally shot down. I didn't have a come back for such a fact-filled reply.

RE: What people don't know....
By mindless1 on 10/28/2010 2:23:23 PM , Rating: 2
You might be overlooking that it is predominantly poorer people who buy these tiny ICE cars.

In other words, nobody really wants them except if financially challenged OR those uninformed enough to think changes of a few percent in gas consumption by a small subset of US passenger automobiles' is remotely close to a significant % of total pollution or oil consumption.

It isn't, though the latter could also be said about EV owners.

RE: What people don't know....
By EricR on 10/28/2010 6:06:31 PM , Rating: 2
The 2012 Focus is hardly a "tiny ICE car" for the "financially challenged OR those uninformed". 5_interiorlhd_focus13_lowres.jpg

RE: What people don't know....
By EricR on 10/28/2010 5:34:15 PM , Rating: 2
Plus, since 2005 the Ford Focus has met the EPA PZEV (Partial Zero Emissions Vehicle) standards. It is a very clean car from an emmissions standpoint.

Editor please!
By DemiCalf on 10/28/2010 9:33:13 AM , Rating: 1
"China is currently cutting off supplies of rare earth metals to China and the U.S."

Anandtech is currently cutting off supplies of rare editorial coherence to its readers. :)

RE: Editor please!
By amanojaku on 10/28/2010 9:39:52 AM , Rating: 2
DT != AnandTech

RE: Editor please!
By DemiCalf on 10/28/2010 11:24:23 AM , Rating: 2
I get to this site from Anandtech. DailyTech's editors should be responsible for their content and sites like Anand that link to it should kick DailyTech's butt to make sure that it is not:

"currently cutting off supplies of oxygen to the brains of its writers". :)

Quite Frankly...
By mmatis on 10/28/2010 6:10:34 PM , Rating: 2
this would be better titled "J.D. Power Releases OPTIMISTIC Outlook for Hybrids, EVs". The ongoing depression will CONTINUE to reduce overall car sales significantly for several more years, and the Green farce will not gain traction, especially with the upcoming upheaval.

By hsr0601 on 10/28/2010 7:15:14 PM , Rating: 2
The yellow and purple Audi A2 car took around seven hours to complete the 600-kilometre (372-mile) stretch, even had the heating on.

Driver Mirko Hannemann, the chief of DBM Energy, drove the distance at 90 km/h (55 miles per hour) on average, had the heat on and was able to whisk around a few more miles in the city. When the A2 electric finished, it still had 18% of the initial electric charge in the battery.

It has a lithium-metal-polymer battery. DBM Energy, the company that built the battery and electric motors into the Audi A2, said the battery would function for 500,000 kilometres.

A representative of the car said the Audi still featured all the usual creature comforts such as power steering, air-conditioning and even heated seats as well, so it was not like the car was especially made for long distance record attempts

The German engineers said their car was special because the battery was not installed inside the luggage area, but under the luggage area, meaning the full interior space of the car was still available

The battery, based on what DBM Energy calls the KOLIBRI AlphaPolymer Technology, comes with 97 percent efficiency and can be charged at virtually every socket. Plugged into a high-voltage direct-current source, the battery can be fully loaded within 6 minutes

The young inventor couldn't give an exact price for his battery -- he said that was dependent on scaling effects -- but vowed it wouldn't just be more powerful, but in the end also cheaper than conventional lithium ion batteries.

What's more important, the technology which made the trip possible is available today.

German Economics Minister Rainer Bruederle, who subsidized the drive, said it showed electric cars are not utopian but really work.

By sleepeeg3 on 10/28/2010 7:52:44 PM , Rating: 2

By mmatis on 10/28/2010 8:08:08 PM , Rating: 2
to emphasize just how optimistic JD Power really is:

Original survey here:
For the AGW Hoax deniers...

"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007

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