• Sep 20, 2010
Forecasting the future of the automotive market ain't no easy task. The complex forces at work, including widely ranging government incentives and automaker's often-rosy outlooks, make predicting the future for emerging technologies all the more difficult. Will hybrids be a boon to the automotive industry? Will electric vehicles bomb? Predictions regarding the automotive industry's future are simply guesses based on some facts, complex tracking of trends, significant speculation and, sometimes, lies. With all this in mind, we now turn our attention to Alan Baum, a Michigan-based auto industry analyst who has predicted the future of the industry for nearly 30 years. Baum's expertise is hard to question and his forecasting model is unorthodox, but remember, even the best laid plans don't always yield accurate results.

Baum predicts a burgeoning market for advanced technology vehicles. Within the next five years, Baum forecasts that we'll see more than 50 conventional hybrid models, over 30 electric vehicle models, almost 20 plug-in hybrid models and even a few fuel cell models in production. The folks over at Hybrid Cars provided a breakdown of the vehicles that Baum believes we'll see in the next five years:
Baum is tracking a whopping 108 electric-drive vehicles by model year 2015. That's up from 22 grid-free hybrids and one electric car, the Tesla Roadster, in production today. There will be 27 new model introductions for the model year 2011 alone-effectively doubling the number of hybrids and plug-ins in a single year. Baum indicates that the 2011 U.S. line-up will add 13 conventional hybrids, 3 plug-in hybrids, and 11 battery electric cars. By the model year 2015, the new car market will have 108 electric-drive models. Nearly half of them will be conventional hybrids, but there will also be 18 plug-in hybrids, 32 EVs, and 6 fuel-cell electric cars.
Baum is quick to point out that many of the vehicles that he tracks, have not been announced by automakers. Again, it's a prediction, which involves educated guesses, statistical analysis and perhaps even some voodoo magic. Baum wrapped up this round of forecasting by predicting that advanced technology vehicles could account for as much as five percent of annual sales in the U.S. by 2015. That amounts to nearly one million hybrids and EVs sold per year. We sure hope he's right.

[Source: Hybrid Cars]


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  • 23 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Are there much more than 100 gas cars currentlly?
      • 4 Years Ago
      "That amounts to nearly one million hybrids and EVs sold per year."

      Just because a car is available, does not necessarily translate to high sales.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It's just an approximation based on average sales of 10,000 units per year by each of those 108 models that could be available.

        It doesn't seem too unreasonable. Fisker hopes the Karma will sell in the range of 15,000 per year, and then there's the NINA which will likely be sold in much greater volumes. Likewise, the Tesla S and Bluestar should be pretty high volume, and then we already know the Nissan Leaf will be in high volume...

        1,000,000 EVs sold a year by 2015 seems like a conservative figure to me.

        It's always nice to see the FCVs included in these estimates, also. I'll agree they won't hit the same sheer volumes as PHEVs, but there is certainly a market for them. We know GM, Honda, Mercedes, Toyota, and Hyundai are firm in their commitments, and with Ford, VW, BMW, Nissan, Renault, and Peugeot also indicating FCVs, I personally think the 6 FCV number is also pretty conservative. Nevermind the Chinese...

        I do assume all these figures are for private passenger autos, and don't include commercial vehicles or transit buses.
      • 4 Years Ago
      GEEZ - with a hundred new EV models gonna be produced in the next five years,
      sure doesn't seem like we needed to subsidize* unknown companies like Tesla and Fisker.

      *(loans without collateral with a small chance of being paid back - in my humble opinion - but mark my words)

      $1/2 a billion each in round numbers. That's $500,000,000.00 times two.

      By 2015 the market will be saturated, and stuff being designed now will be obsolete, like early computers and cell phones. Heck, my one year old cell phone is already a clunker.


      So, really there was never a need for subsidies. Especially with deficit dollars.
        • 4 Years Ago
        So what's your opinion on the subsidies for "established" companies like GM? Or for the oil industry? Defense contractors? Agriculture? Finance?

        The "subsidies" that Fisker and Tesla -or any company in the green energy sector really- recieve are miniscule compared to those spent on the "traditional" auto industry, but even those pale in comparison to the amount of money funneled into the financial industry.

        These companies develop valuable technologies for your country and create a market with tremendous job potential for pennies on the dime. Hell I wish my country was that smart!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Nerd -

        Why did Tesla and Fisker get the loans? Because when the program kicked off, GM and Chrysler couldn't pass the test for finacial viability that Tesla and Fisker both passed. And Ford was the only other US car maker to apply, and they got loans too.

        You have clearly made your point over and over that you are against US manufacturing, like Fisker's plant that will be funded by this loan right here in the United States, and Tesla's plant that will also be here in the United States. You've clearly made your voice heard that you don't want new start-up manufacturing jobs right here in the US.

        Personally, I think that is EXACTLY what the US gov't needs to be supporting. I can't see any better use of US tax dollars than betting on US workers right here in the United States. You can keep betting against the American People if that is what you want to do.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Have you stopped to consider that those loans and grants are the reason *why* this volume of EVs is slated to hit the market in a few years?

        It's also been pointed out to you time and time again, that those loans come with very strict wording regarding repayment. But you can keep ignoring that...

        • 4 Years Ago
        @EV nerd Gene

        I agree with you. It is so much better to spend a trillion dollar in wars "securing" oil. We will have the added advatange of having killed 4,000 soldiers, whose lifes will not return - not to speak of 100s of thousands of brownies.

        That is a fantastic way to spend a trillion dollars - and according to some Jesus would have done the same thing.
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is not exactly news. We already have about 20-30 hybrid models here for sale in the USA and 3 EV's coming out very soon. We should see over 10 EV's for sale by 2012-2013. Fuel cell cars? I won't cross my fingers for those.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Bring on as many new models as possible. Competition is good for consumers.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Baum groups conventional hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and electric cars into a single “electric vehicle forecast." He sees the biggest growth in conventional hybrids, and believes that pure electric cars will only strengthen the market for standard hybrids.

      http://www.goarticles.com/cgi-bin/showa.cgi?C=3374425
      • 4 Years Ago
      Yeah, I'm against all subsidies. In the near future, there will be books written about the stupidity and corruption in Stimulus spending.
      Where's the jobs? Yes, I could have supported infrastructure spending and jobs.

      I pick on Fisker because it never deserved one cent of loan or subsidy on either end. Simple end first = $7500. market incentive. If you can afford $87k for a car, why am I subsidizing it?

      The $528.7 MILLION loan from the DOE. Why?
      Technology? Nothing ground-breaking there.
      Oodles of jobs? The Karma will be built in Finland.
      Jobs in an empty plant in New Jersey?
      My opinion - Fisker will be a footnote in history before then.

      Two guys from N. Europe who have never produced a car before, convinced the DOE to loan them half a billion to build cars fo rich fok.
      Oh, then we'll have a cheaper model to compete with all the ones from the BIG guys.

      Sorry I'm cynical; but there were some shenanigans in the swamp (Washington DC - Pelosi's term).
      Why was Joe Biden involved? and Al Gore?
      half a BIL should be subtracted from their pensions, and everyone else involved.

      Attention: WIRED and ROLLING STONE - there's a story here.
      Seems like the only two places where I read any truth lately (see ZAP article in RS in 2008).

      and NO this Billion blown isn't the *why* for all the EV models coming out. The technology is finally here (at a reasonable price?) for something like a Leaf.
      If you're rich, buy a Tesla - and they coulda raised the "loan" in private markets.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "Simple end first = $7500. market incentive. If you can afford $87k for a car, why am I subsidizing it?"

        This I can sort of support. I'd prefer to see a sliding scale that has bigger incentives for those with lower incomes and no incentive for those with higher incomes. I agree that the US government is helping rich people buy cars they can easily afford - cars that will be secondary toys, in the case of the Tesla Roadster.

        "Two guys from N. Europe who have never produced a car before..."

        LOL. You obviously have no idea who Henrik Fisker is. He's responsible for quite a few autos.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "By the model year 2015, the new car market will have 108 electric-drive models. Nearly half of them will be conventional hybrids, but there will also be 18 plug-in hybrids, 32 EVs, and 6 fuel-cell electric cars."

      I think we can subtract 6 from that number.

        • 4 Years Ago
        At least:

        1 from GM
        1 from Mercedes
        1 from Toyota
        1 from Hyundai / Kia
        • 4 Years Ago
        LOL

        +1
        • 4 Years Ago
        Don't forget the Honda FCX Clarity, already in production.
      • 4 Years Ago
      If those 100 models sell at the same rate GM sells their hybrids, we could have about 100,000 cars sold in 2015 ;-)
      • 4 Years Ago
      "That amounts to nearly one million hybrids and EVs sold per year."

      Just because a car is available, does not necessarily translate to high sales.
      • 4 Years Ago
      The numberss don't seem to count what are sometimes termed micro-hybrids, with stop/start and sometimes regenerative braking.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Hi Jeff,
        Arguing with Petersen who changes definitions to suit his case has no doubt corrupted my usage, but just the same things get a bit more complex than that.
        The Valeo system going into a lot of Peugeot/Citroen cars uses regenerative braking, but not to power the car along the road.
        They save money by using it to power auxillaries, air con and so on.

        The results of your testing should be of interest, as driving conditions in the US are different.
        In cities in Europe the benfits of stop/start are obvious.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The accepted definition of micro-hybrids is that there must be regen braking--if not, it's just a stop-start vehicle. If you add electric propulsion power, you now have a mild hybrid and with all-electric propulsion, it's a full hybrid. Of course this is just for parallel architectures, and any series design is a full hybrid by definition (power-splits are always at least mild but to date have all been full).

        Whether there are more micro-hybrids (the MY2004 to MY2007 Chevrolet Silverado is only one that has been sold in North America by the OEMs) sold in the U.S. will depend on the EPA tests and whether they are modified (unlikely). There is currently very little idling time in the 5-cycle methodology, especially in comparison to the NEDC (Europe) and the JC08 (Japan). So the car companies haven't included this feature when it doesn't show up as a significant benefit in the fuel economy tests. (Aside: my company just imported seven vehicles from Europe to test the fuel economy benefits in real-world conditions.)
      Nancy Jorden
      • 10 Months Ago
      I have been looking for ways to clean my apartment. There are so many different options. Thanks for sharing. http://greencleaningitems.com/
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