Friday, May 16, 2008

Market For E2Ws in China is Booming

The market for electric two-wheelers (E2Ws) in China is booming; by 2006, the annual sales of E2Ws—which were virtually non-existent in the 1990s—almost equaled those of gasoline two-wheelers (G2W).

Using 2007USD, life-cycle E2W cost is ~$4/100km ($9 using the PPP-adjusted exchange rate (World Bank, 2008)) compared with bicycles at less than $1 ($2 PPP-adjusted) not including cost of food energy required, and $7/100km ($15 PPP-adjusted) for motorcycles (Weinert et al., 2007a). In terms of well-to-wheels energy use, a motorcycle uses four to five times as much energy (10.3 MJ/km) as a similarly powered E2Ws. (2–3 MJ/km).
I was unaware that that many electric two wheelers being sold in China. This may turn out to be a major driver in the electrification of transportation.
At least three Li-ion battery companies are making batteries for E2Ws with the strategy to build up production volumes with the E2W market and eventually shift to producing batteries for EVs.
I had thought that electrification of transportation would start with high end cars like the Tesla Roadster and then gradually expand as prices came down and technology improved. This presents another path toward electrification, working instead from the bottom up, with million of low cost E2Ws driving innovation in batteries leading to affordable electric cars.

via Energy Policy (.pdf) via Green Car Congress

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