Electric vehicles (EVs), are seen as the future solution and innovative method of sustainable mobility. EVs are being rediscovered only after we have been influenced for too long by easy-to-use internal combustion engines, which made commuting a pleasure and our environment toxic. It’s almost shocking to learn that electric cars made up nearly one third of all New York City cars in 1900. 28% of all US cars that year were EVs. It will take many years, if not decades, to duplicate this kind of percentage in modern times.

Despite being so popular back then, EVs have not been able to win despite their popularity. This is due to a lack of reliable, safe, and widespread power supply. While it was possible to drive an electric vehicle in NYC, they were not allowed to be driven into rural areas. This is a benefit that the petrol/diesel cars had. Over the past 120 years, EV technology has seen a major shift, with batteries taking the center-stage. We are moving away from ICE vehicles and back to EVs because of the infrastructure, safety and reliability. What is driving today’s shift to electric vehicles?

Let’s look at the main reasons.

Sustainability – Sustainable mobility is a key factor in the adoption of EVs around the world. Climate change is real. Every year, we are more likely to experience weather anomalies like severe storms and extreme rainfall. Every region is seeing glacial ice melting. India’s Government has set a goal to convert 30% of its new vehicles to electric vehicles by 2030. Similar sustainable transportation goals are also being implemented in other countries.
India’s urban areas are particularly concerned about last-mile commutes and individual micro-mobility. Revisions to the strategies will focus on sustainable modes of micro-mobility for commutes up to 10km per side. Shared EVs are for intercity and interstate travel.

User behavior – While loudly thumping, fuel-guzzling bikes may still be popular, they are slowly losing popularity with modern users. Generation Z commuters, Millennials, and others are willing to use affordable, simple-to-use and emission-free micro mobility solutions. E-rickshaws and e-2 wheels are quickly becoming more popular, but we also see a rise in demand for ecycles. The demand for and adoption of e-cycles will rise as more EV models are introduced to the market. We might not see cars clogging our streets in the future, as micro-mobility solutions will take over. There would be no parking conflicts as each sedan could easily fit six or more ebikes in the same space. The e-cycles can also be used to exercise on the move, as they have the ability to pedal.

Technology evolution – EVs were able to fail because they were so far ahead of their time in the 1900s. Although the technology was revolutionary and clean, there wasn’t an ecosystem to support it. The story of EV technology has changed dramatically in the past 122 years. You can now find vehicles that can travel 100 kilometres on a single charge. Even a decent e-bike has enough battery support to handle the daily commute of an average user. Due to the increasing demand for EVs and the favorable governmental legislations, there has been a lot more innovation in technology development, manufacturing, and battery development, as well as the construction of infrastructure. Fast chargers for smartphones have made battery death a distant memory. EV fast chargers, as well as battery swapping solutions, will soon make it possible for these vehicles to continue running.

The IoT technology is also enabling an interconnected ecosystem, dubbed Internet of Vehicles (IoV). This technology will enable autonomous, interconnected vehicles to safely transport people to their destinations. These vehicles will reduce the need to own cars and will eventually be eliminated. Shared commutes or cabs will become the norm in longer travel, and people will use e-bikes, scooters and other similar devices for their commute.

It is also sensible to make the switch to electric mobility because of other temporary factors, such as the rapid increase in fuel prices. There is a good chance that your next vehicle purchase will be an electric one. Let us know what you think.

By Manali