Quel avenir pour la voiture électrique ? What Future for the ...
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Quel avenir pour la voiture électrique ? What Future for the ...

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Quel avenir pour la voiture électrique ? What Future for the ...

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Quel avenir pour la voiture électrique ?
What Future for the Electric Car?
Pierre Bonnaure
The “conventional” car industry is in crisis. This is not a recent phenomenon, but the
current economic crisis has taken it to new levels. We may add to this the bad press that
fossil fuels are receiving in a context where oil is becoming scarcer and greenhouse gas
emissions are being combated. Does this offer brighter prospects for the development of
electric cars, which are far from new as a concept, but have not so far succeeded in
achieving commercial take-off? Noting the recent increase in the number of new electric
models, Pierre Bonnaure has turned his attention to this question. In this article he
outlines the current state of this sector: the excitement around the concept and the
technological options and limitations… He stresses, above all, that the market for all-
electric vehicles should be confined to small urban models, and only then if the
performance and lifespan of the new batteries turn out to match the claims made for
them, if the authorities support the initiative, and if recharge electricity is not subject to
tax. In such a context, the situation seems more conducive to the development of hybrid
vehicles, whose features are also described here. Lastly, above and beyond the technical
aspects, Pierre Bonnaure reminds us how the electric vehicles market is dependent on
much wider developments (industrial production of batteries and recycling, establishment
of a network of recharge/repair stations, development of the electrical grid to meet the
additional demand for power etc.) - dependent, in short, on a systemic revolution that is
far from having begun.
Revue Futuribles, no 351, April 2009, 104 pages, Paris.