Battery Cost Projections Called 'Nuts'!

EPRI's Mark Duvall argues that NRC and Boston Group reports are based on old data.

Published: 04-Feb-2010

Perhaps nothing has rankled more electric-vehicle enthusiasts in recent months than a report by the National Research Council that predicted that the high cost of lithium-ion batteries will prevent plug-in hybrid electric vehicles from being widely adopted in the U.S. for at least two decades.

Moreover, broad acceptance of PHEVs - such as the much-touted Chevy Volt, expected to enter production this year - will require at least tens of billions of dollars in government subsidies, the NRC said in its Dec. 14 report. A report by the Boston Consulting Group three weeks later bolstered the NRC's conclusions.

For a car such the Volt, which has a rechargeable battery capable of delivering up to 40 miles of range (making it a so-called PHEV-40), the cost premium relative to a similar gas-powered car is estimated to be $18,000 in 2011 - $14,000 of which is for the battery alone - and still would be about $11,000 in 2030, the NRC report said.

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