The internal combustion engine might be a thing of the past in the next decade to come. The world seems hellbent on adopting electric vehicles on a wide scale but there are still plenty of hurdles to overcome. In a recent interview with media representatives from Australia, at the BMW Welt in Munich, Dr Heinz Treseler, one of the people involved in developing the BMW X5 PHEV claimed the world isn’t ready for a massive adoption of EVs but rather plug-in hybrids for now.
“For many cases it [PHEV] is still the best solution. There are limits with pure electric drive at the moment,” Dr Treseler said.
The demand shows he’s right. While people are still rather reticent towards EVs, mainly because of range anxiety, plug-in hybrids are on the rise, precisely for that reason: virtually unlimited range. They do offer the best of both worlds: electric driving around town and conventional usage outside city limits. For now, then, the hybrid alternative seems to be more popular and it may be so for quite some time. Another issue could be the fact that there simply aren’t enough charging stations to go around.
Furthermore, according to BMW Australia Corporate Communications General Manager Leanne Blanckenberg there simply aren’t enough incentives offered right now to make the case for EVs and a wider adoption by the customers:
“Until the infrastructure and the incentives are there to push the customers to buy that technology [EV] we need to have something else to offer,” Blanckenberg said to WhichCar. It’s a valid point but, in the end, incentives shouldn’t be the only reason people buy electric cars in the first place. They should be just the icing on the cake.
Whether that strategy will pay off in the end remains to be seen but it’s obvious that BMW doesn’t see EVs as a long term, widespread mobility solution right now.