Transport Theory

Elon Musk: half of new cars will be electric in 20 years

Posting in Energy

Tesla CEO Elon Musk defies market analysis with his lofty forecast - but the man is often right about his predictions.

The mainstream consumer market has been slow to make the switch from gasoline-powered cars to electric vehicles, as many argue that the EVs on the market today fall short of consumer expectations. Germany, which had set itself a lofty goal of having one million electric cars on its roads by 2020, has backed off that target, with industry leaders arguing that consumers need more incentives to make the switch.

But Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, believes that electric vehicles are the future. Musk, whose all-electric Tesla Model S was recently unveiled to much acclaim, said he thinks that in 20 years, half of all new cars will be fully electric. He even gave a fixed time frame (12 to 15 years) and said, "I feel actually quite safe in that bet. That's a bet I will put money on."

Musk's prediction counters those of most market analysts - while they do see an uptick in the number of EVs on the road, they will claim nowhere near half the market share. Even Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn has a more conservative outlook, claiming ten percent of new vehicles will be electric by 2020.

For the time being, the first bet Musk needs to deliver on is the company's claim that it will sell more than 20,000 Model S units next year.

Photo: Tesla

via [Treehugger, Green Car Reports]

Channtal Fleischfresser

Contributing Editor

Contributing Editor Channtal Fleischfresser has worked for The Economist, WNET/Channel 13, Al Jazeera English, Wall Street Journal and Associated Press. She holds degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She is based in New York. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure