Most automotive companies are more focused on improving electric car range and reducing costs than enhancing the vehicles’ carbon footprint, says a research report by Hexagon.
Manufacturing electric vehicles and batteries, as per the research, is a lot dependent on power generated using fossil fuels.
It is worth mentioning that a recent report by Volvo had termed EVs as far dirtier out of the factory gate. The report noted that EVs need to clock up nearly twice as many miles compared to petrol cars to ‘break even’.
Only 38% of carmakers, as per Hexagon, are increasing investments in designing and developing sustainable EVs. A majority, 84%, in comparison, are more focused on expanding the range of EVs, while 60% focus on increasing investment in design to enable lower production and retail costs.
The majority of carmakers (56%) identify a lack of alternatives to rare-earth metals for batteries as the major obstacle. Half (49%) are also concerned about the lack of recyclable battery materials, closely followed by the lack of recycling programmes and infrastructure (47%). Supply chain vulnerabilities, including the chip shortage, are also seen as one of the biggest hindrances in expanding the production of electric vehicles.
Ignazio Dentici, VP, Global eMobility Industry, Manufacturing Intelligence Division, Hexagon, said, “Our research reflects a welcome recognition by the auto industry that sustainability involves more than merely reducing road emissions, revealing an understanding of the whole-lifecycle manufacturing and material impact of vehicles. However, it also shows that despite this knowledge, carmakers are feeling more pressure to compete for consumer sales than to ensure EVs can fulfil their core purpose of reducing the environmental impact of road transport.”
The report, Recharging the Automotive Market, is produced by Hexagon and draws from original research conducted with Wards Intelligence and Informa Tech Automotive Group (ITAG), with a comprehensive survey of 416 eMobility design and manufacturing decision-makers across the global automotive supply chain.
NB: Photo is representational; courtesy: Nio.