A new industry survey by KPMG concludes that industry executives and car buyers are less than bullish on the commercial prospects for pure-battery electric vehicles.

KPMG on pure battery EVsClick image to enlarge

Fifty-four per cent of global auto executives surveyed for the 2018 KPMG Global Automotive Executive Survey said that infrastructure challenges will prevent the technology from succeeding commercially. Sixty per cent (66% in the US) said the time required for recharging will deep-six the vehicles.

Consumers aren’t sold on BEVs either, KPMG points out, preferring hybrids or internal combustion engines over BEVs.

The gloom and doom hasn’t stopped OEMs from committing billions of dollars to research across the spectrum of electric powertrain technologies. Other than internal combustion, 72% of the 1000 executives surveyed said they would invest in hybrids and plug-in hybrids, followed by 69% for pure battery electric, and 67% for fuel cells.

Asked to identify who the electric vehicle leaders will be in 2025, executives outside picked BMW (21%) and Tesla (14%). US ranked Tesla on top (20%), BMW second (15%), Ford third (8%), and GM and Toyota tied in fourth at 7%.

Seventy-seven per cent of respondents (85% in the US) said they believe fuel cells are going to be where electric mobility makes its real breakthrough.

Pure battery electrics didn’t get a break from car buyers either. In conjunction with the survey, KPMG also polled 2,100 consumers from 42 countries to get their views. Thirteen per cent of consumers outside the US – and 5% in the US – said they’d buy a pure battery electric vehicle over the next five years.

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McMaster Manufacturing Research Institute's Industry Open House

Becoming more competitive means embracing new technologies that can help to reduce manufacturing costs and improve productivity.

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