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Electric vehicles top auto industry trend, KPMG survey reveals

Executives, however, believe ongoing challenges related to EV charging infrastructure will cause them to fail.


February 16, 2017
by PLANT Staff

TORONTO — Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) have overtaken connectivity and digitization as the top trend in the industry until 2025, according to half of the automotive executives surveyed in KPMG’s 2017 Global Automotive Executive Survey.

However, the key issue with pure battery electric vehicles seems to be setting up a user-friendly charging infrastructure, leading the majority (62%) of executives to believe that BEVS will ultimately fail. Meanwhile, 78% of executives believe that BEVs will be overshadowed by fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) in the future, with FCEVs solving the recharging and infrastructure issues BEVs face today.

In addition, the survey shows that autonomous driving will revolving will revolutionize the way we use cars and make the purchasing criteria of the past irrelevant. Indeed, 68% of executives already feel that the purchasing criteria of the past like performance and speed, safety innovation, environmental friendliness or comfort will not determine the purchase of a car anymore.

Other key findings include:

  • Diesel is set for rapid decline. From a regulatory perspective, the most discussed topic over the last year has been diesel technology. Half of the executives surveyed believe diesel will be the first traditional powertrain technology to vanish from the manufacturers’ portfolio.
  • Investing and winning,
  • Over the next five years, 53% of executives are planning to invest in plug-in hybrids, and 52% in internal combustion engines (ICE) and full hybrids. KPMG also surveyed 240 consumers on their vehicle purchasing opinions and found the full hybrid vehicles are their first choice for their next car (36%), while 21% would still buy a car with an ICE.

  • Taking the temperature on the digital ecosystem
  • In the future, 85% of executives believe that the digital ecosystem will generate higher revenues than the hardware of the car itself.

The Global Automotive Executive Survey is KPMG International’s annual assessment of the current state and future prospects of the worldwide automotive industry. This year’s survey includes responses from almost 1,000 senior executives from the world’s leading automotive companies, including automakers, suppliers, dealers, financial services providers, rental companies, mobility services providers, and companies from the information and communication technology (ICT) sector.

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