We've taken a good look at each of the three electric vehicle concepts that Chrysler took the wraps off of last week, plus one extra for good measure. For various reasons, none of these vehicles really seems quite ready for prime time - one is based on a Lotus sportscar chassis, two require huge battery packs and the last is limited to 25 miles per hour. Tough bring those to market. Still, Chrysler says it plans to launch one of them by 2010 in the U.S. with European delivery scheduled a bit later. We'll see. If that does happen, Chrysler's EV would join the Chevy Volt as the first mainstream(-ish) cars in the States not powered by gasoline in a very, very long time.
If Chrysler's predictions are accurate, though, don't expect the market to stay petroleum-dependent for long. In fact, Chrysler's executive vice president of product development, Frank Klegon, has said that half the cars sold here in 2020 will feature electric power. That's a long way to go in just a decade. In any case, the future promises lots of interesting things for the domestic auto market.