The Future of the Automobile

By Wooseong Yoo

Recently, many car manufacturing companies have produced and supplied electric cars in the market. It is true that having an electric car is still not easy. Customers do not have many choices to buy, and the charging infrastructure is not enough. In addition, although the government gives benefits to electric car drivers, the prices of the cars are relatively higher than conventional cars. However,  many companies are making the generation of electric cars possible. Currently, plug-in hybrid cars and pure electric cars are produced in the market.

Plug-in hybrid cars share the characteristics of both conventional internal combustion engine cars and electric cars. Different from hybrid cars, drivers can charge their cars with not only gasoline but also electricity. One example is BMW i8.

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The i8 uses a three cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, with a 1.5liter capacity, in conjunction with an electric motor. The high-voltage battery can be recharged from a conventional household power socket or at a  public charging station. The battery can also be recharged via the electric motor on the overrun. The plug-in hybrid cars are between conventional gasoline cars and pure electric cars.

Pure electric cars, which is also called EVs, are only charged with electricity. They have electric motors, using rechargeable batteries instead of internal combustion engines. One of the significant features is that EVs are emission-free. With the current technology, most EVs cannot be driven long distance once it is charged. Therefore, they are mostly used in cities. I think that in mega cities, where air pollution is serious, EVs will help improve the environment. The BMW i3, Tesla Model X and S, and Volkswagen E-Golf are the examples.

Soon enough, there can be a time when everybody takes electric cars or even more innovative cars.1024px-Porsche_918_Spyder_IAA_2013

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8 responses to “The Future of the Automobile

  1. husseinelsadek

    Electric cars are in fact the most reasonable solution to preserving energy as well as oil but the approach companies have taken has slowed down the spread of electric cars. The electric cars Tesla and BMW have produced are too expensive for the general masses to cause an influx of these efficient cars on the streets of the world. This completely defeats the purpose; such a concept would improve the world economy only if it is widespread and it won’t be as long as the prices are at that level.

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  2. barghout

    Electric cars are a profitable investment as of recent years. More charging stations are being installed and these cars are of the most environmentally friendly cars ever built. They may cost a lot nowadays, however, when pollution rises and supply for more sustainable innovations increases, then prices for such hybrids and electric cars will drop. I am positive that technological innovators will eventually find a way to allow EV cars to travel long distances in the future.

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  3. deeen4ik

    The Electric Car business has definitely evolved for the past decade. Now with cars such as i8 or Tesla people’s view of electric cars changes. More and more people can be seen driving an EV’s around the city. And i think that the reason for being overpriced is purely controlled by the big companies who have ties with oil industry, but I do believe that eventually EV’s will dominate the industry.

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  4. Emission problem of the car can be solved during the process of developing and perfecting the electric cars. The pollution problem should be solved because we need a clean and safe environment for us to live. In addition. it can also save petrol, which is a precious natural resource we have.

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  5. I find this very interesting and hopefully in a short future this could be possible. I don’t know much about cars, but like anyone else am very attracted to them. The idea of having electrical cars is one that if applied well could help facilitate everyones life and help improve the environment as well. All these different technological advances are what are going to shape our near future, and I’m very excited to see what that has to bring. Not only that, but I also believe it will have a huge impact on the world as it will help reduce the pollution and in compensation we are able to live in cleaner and safer place.

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  6. In my opinion electric cars are just a new way car manufactures found to make more money. Electric cars are not as good for the environment as people tend to think. Yes, it reduces the amount of carbon dioxide levels in the cities, but most people completely forget about the production side. Electricity is neither cheap nor easy to produce. If electricity is produced by coal powered plants, than there is more and more electricity demand, that is just increasing the amount of pollution that the plant produces. Also even if plans are not using coal, there will still be manufacturing waste that must be dealt with. Also the batteries which these cars require are extremely hazardous and have to be properly recycled when they go bad. But most people do not think how a battery is made. The chemicals and materials used in a battery remain harmful for millions of years. But the life of a battery is nowhere near that. So once the battery dies it need to be buried at a specific location and that location will be hazardous for millions of years. Essentially what is happening is we are creating a manmade Chernobyl, but with much higher environmental cost for the future. Electric cars might seem like a good solution for now but it is also our responsibility to make sure our future generations are not stuck with hazardous materials that we produced today. The damage on the environment in the long term outweighs the benefits of having these cars today.
    Here is a short article that goes in some greater detail in regards to production of electric and hybrid cars.

    http://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/everyday-myths/does-hybrid-car-production-waste-offset-hybrid-benefits1.htm

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  7. jasonfanzhang

    Electric cars have the potential of changing the world not because of green energy or any other conservation movements. I believe that new ideas such as electric cars will encourage people to come up with new ideas that are more efficient and also provide jobs to people and gives people all over the world an incentive to keep coming up with innovative ideas that could hopefully create a new industry.

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  8. Dear Wooseong,

    Innovation can be a great thing. It is fascinating to see new inventions and innovations that can be used positively. The automobile industry can play in great role in developing cars which are efficient modes of transportation and also good for the environment. And we will have to wait and see the cars of the future.

    ~Professor Myra Chaudhary

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