The automotive world is undergoing gradual but radical transformation as energy and safeguarding our environment have become central issues crucial to sector development.
Continuous technological and design improvements have been the industry’s hallmark since the introduction of the combustion engine and a key factor in its worldwide presence.
In recent years, an increasing number of carmakers have introduced onto the market hybrid solutions combining combustion-engine and electric propulsion via batteries that can be recharged from the grid using special plug-in devices. Employing a range of technologies, the new system aims to reduce the environmental footprint of vehicles in major urban areas. However, combining system efficiency with the complete elimination of harmful emissions still remains an unsolved problem today, hampered not least by the lack of adequate infrastructure to support the electric vehicle. As a result, the scenario for the next few years will be a mix of traditionally fueled, hybrid and completely electric cars.
Electric vs fossil fuel
It is generally believed that the electric car is a zero-emission solution. Clearly, however, the energy requirements to build a new, all-electric auto fleet is one of the key problems, both in terms of the actual number of cars needed but also of the allied equipment and infrastructure. The effects on the environment and the wider economy of the production methods and costs of introducing a different energy system need to be taken into account.
The periodical European Commission reports on these questions show a significant increase in the percentage of energy coming from renewable sources: from 17% in 2015 to 38% in 2018. However, the data also highlight that energy use and the consequent environmental footprint are highly complex, with big differences between geographical areas. In fact, making available a widespread, broadly accessible system,...
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