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Electrified cars: the xEV decade

Electrification BEV PHEV

A revised study predicts a slow phase-out of the Internal Combustion Engine.

The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has revised its automotive market electrification projections for the coming decade. The new study is a revision of projections first published late 2017.

The main conclusion is that electrified cars will have a 51% share of the worldwide car market in 2030. The corollary is that 82% of new cars sold in 2030 will still have an internal combustion engine, assisted with different levels of electrification:

2030 Worldwide car market powertrain mix

A reminder on acronyms:
– MHEV: Mild Hybrid Electric Vehicle, cars equipped with a low voltage hybrid system capable of recovering some of the kinetic energy to power components
– HEV: Hybrid Electric Vehicle, cars with a self rechargeable electric system capable of moving the vehicle in limited conditions
– PHEV: Plug In Hybrid Electric Vehicle, cars with a rechargeable electric system capable of moving the vehicle for short commutes
– BEV: Battery Electric Vehicle, purely electric car

According to the BCG model, electrification would not result in an industrial revolution and the mid term obsolescence of the Internal Combustion Engine (ICE), but in a gradual transition where an increased share of new cars sold integrate electrical subsystems: batteries, of course, but also motor/generators and power electronics.

In fact, total ICE volumes would continue to increase to reach 100 million units in 2024, before slowly contracting to 90 million in 2030. Under these definitions, the growth of “xEVs” can be assimilated to astroturfing: cars get electrified, but remain widely reliant on fossil fuels.

Viewed at 5 year intervals, the transition is mainly driven by two factors: the adoption of electric cars by one fifth of the market, and the integration of mild hybrids by another fifth of the market.

Car powertrain share 2020 2030 BEV PHEV hybrid

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