The global low emission vehicle (LEV) market size was estimated to be worth over USD 30 billion in 2014 and is anticipated to witness significant growth from 2015 to 2022. Stringent environmental regulations for rising pollutants in transport and industrial emissions are expected to stimulate product demand over the forecast period.
The rising population coupled with increasing usage of individual transport vehicles contributes to a significant increase in air pollution in metropolitan cities. The development of secondary cities has gained momentum as a part of economic development in various economies including India, China, Brazil, and Japan. However, old and inefficient transport infrastructure in metropolitan cities has to lead to increasing levels of traffic congestion, noise, and vehicle emissions.
Primary pollutants present in emissions include nitrogen oxides (NOx) and volatile organic compounds and other common pollutants such as particulate matter and ground-level ozone. Worsening effects of air pollution range from cardiovascular disease to lung cancer and asthma. Increasing cases of illness have steered both government and non-government focus towards the revision of emission standards and health risks associated with hazardous compounds.
The severity of air pollution has raised concerns among government officials to monitor intense traffic areas such as construction sites, schools, hospitals, and rail stations where congestion is high during prime hours of the day. Other places where the continuous exhaust is witnessed include ships, warehouse, airports, and bus terminals.
Apart from increasing monitoring duties, various regulations have been implemented that affect the type of fuel usage in vehicles. Favorable government initiatives for investing in new low emission technologies are expected to minimize fossil fuel usage that has a major contribution to air pollution. This has also encouraged low emission vehicle industry participants to invest in developing low carbon technologies and offer opportunities for improvisation in the automotive supply chain.
Low emission vehicles are expected to positively influence the growth of environment-friendly automotive companies. Improvements in fuel efficiency and improvisation of automotive components to cater to the renewable fuels are expected to drive innovations in the manufacturing sector. Recent developments in the biofuels market are expected to drive decarbonization in aviation and freight sector
Electric vehicles (EV) require continuous electric supply and cannot be dependent solely on electric batteries. Focus on low emission automobiles provides opportunities for R&D initiatives in developing fuel-efficient cars and buses. Developments in combining both conventional and renewable energy systems are anticipated to play a major role in driving hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) demand over the forecast period.
A combination of internal combustion (IC) engine system with an electric propulsion system is expected to provide increased fuel economy and performance in the HEVs. High manufacturing costs associated with LEV are expected to hinder low emission vehicle industry growth. Manufacturing costs depend on the degree of hybridization implemented in the EVs.
According to the degree of hybridization, low emission vehicles can be classified into full HEVs and battery-powered EVs that mark dominance in the global low emission vehicle market share. Battery-powered vehicles are dependent majorly on nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) and lithium-ion batteries that offer longer usage time over conventional ones.
Pure electric vehicles might offer low speed but have gained consumer acceptance in individual transport sectors such as scooters, cards, and bicycles. Electric-powered vehicles including plug-in-hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles are expected to gain significant focus owing to decrement in greenhouse gas emissions.
Tax incentives for LEVs are expected to drive LEV demand over the forecast period. The development of recharging infrastructure has also gained significance as part of the central agenda in economic development. Governments in collaboration with private sectors have implemented various initiatives to enhance the infrastructure market.
Major economies such as the UK, Netherlands, Japan, China, and the U.S. have implemented various initiatives in promoting green fuel technologies. These regions have also revised their emission standards in major trade cities to enhance their position as environment-friendly hubs for consumers.
Various organizations have revised their automotive manufacturing infrastructure to develop efficient and durable EV automobiles. Nissan, Chevrolet, Toyota, and Mitsubishi are major investors in driving EV innovations and they manufacture high volumes of low emitting cars. Other participants in the low emission vehicle market include Renault, BMW, Tesla, Volkswagen, Ford, Cobasys, Honeywell, Delphi, Honda, Suzuki, and Hyundai.
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