Sales of electric cars are set to fall far short of official expectations. The Committee on Climate Change has previously said it would be "feasible and desirable" to have up to 1.7 million fully electric and plug-in hybrid cars on the road by 2020. But most industry analysts predict the number will be significantly lower.
However, average new car emissions in 2020 are still likely to meet the EU target of 95 gCO2/km because of the refinement of existing technologies.
Powering Ahead, a review by the consultancy Ricardo-AEA of a range of authoritative market forecasts, shows even the more positive assessments foresee only 200,000 plug-in hybrid and pure battery powered cars being sold each year in the UK by 2020. The report was launched at the Cars and the Cimate event at the Royal Automobile Club. The speakers included:
Lord Deben - Chairman of the Committee on Climate Change
Professor Dame Julia King - author of the King Review of low-carbon cars
Dr Chris Hope - Judge Business School, University of Cambridge
Doug Parr - Chief Scientist, Greenpeace
and Professor Stephen Glaister - Director of the RAC Foundation