Industry Commitment | PEV Technology | Benefits of PEVs | Challenges | Resources
A new generation of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) will help our country enter an era of clean transportation, reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and create new, high-quality American jobs.
The first round of PEVs began arriving in several U.S. markets at the end of 2010, and the rollout will continue over the next few years. These PEVs will deliver important benefits over standard vehicles and traditional hybrids.
The Electric Generation is a new EEI campaign that represents electric utilities' commitment to the widespread adoption of electricity as a transportation fuel. It taps into the passion and excitement of those who are already driving electric, amplifying their voices and carrying forth the message that electricity makes driving better. Check it out and join in at:
In October 2009, the electric power industry launched a pledge to move forward aggressively to create the infrastructure needed to support full-scale commercialization and deployment of PEVs. Since the launch of the pledge, the industry has made progress toward meeting its goal. Continued collaboration between the electric utility industry and the automobile industry—along with support from federal and state policymakers and regulators—will be critical to the successful implementation of this technology moving forward.
The development of PEV technology results from extensive collaboration among electric power companies, the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), universities, automobile manufacturers, battery and component manufacturers, national laboratories, and research institutes. Like current hybrids, PEVs use battery power in addition to an internal combustion engine. However, unlike traditional hybrids, PEVs do not depend on gasoline to recharge their batteries. Instead, PEVs are plugged in to the existing electricity system, using a standard electrical outlet to recharge the car batteries. Owners can recharge their batteries overnight, using lower-cost, off-peak electricity. Under this scenario, the cost of an equivalent electric-gallon of gasoline could be less than $1.00.
Benefits of PEVs
- Environmental Benefits: PEVs use significantly less gasoline than both current hybrids and standard vehicles—and, therefore, release fewer emissions. In fact, battery-powered PEVs produce just one-third of the greenhouse gases emitted by gasoline-fueled vehicles.
Widespread adoption of PEVs could reduce GHG emissions from vehicles by more than 450 million metric tons annually in 2050—that’s the equivalent of taking 82.5 million passenger cars off the road.
- Economic Benefits: While PEVs have an initially higher cost when compared to most hybrid and non-hybrid vehicles, PEVs should be able to handle the daily driving needs of most Americans using battery power, and will significantly decrease gasoline costs for their owners.
- Job Creation: From manufacturing batteries to building the necessary electricity infrastructure, PEVs will create high-quality job opportunities throughout the country.
- Energy Security: The United States continues to import an increasing amount of the oil, primarily for transportation. PEVs are powered by electricity made from domestic energy sources and will help our country reduce its dependence on foreign oil.
Addressing the Challenges Ahead
- Affordability: High battery costs for manufacturers increase the retail price of PEVs and remain a significant hurdle to bringing PEVs to the market. However, efforts to develop more efficient and affordable batteries should help to lower prices.
- Charging Infrastructure: Building the recharging infrastructure for PEVs in homes, businesses, and public areas raises several challenges that must be addressed to ensure the widespread adoption of PEVs.
- Electricity Infrastructure: Strengthening our nation’s electricity infrastructure with smart grid technology is a key component for large-scale commercialization of PEVs. The electric power industry is focused on developing a smart grid that will deliver significant benefits—such as improving electric system efficiency, utilizing more renewable energy, empowering customers to make smart choices about their energy usage, and using electricity as a fuel for vehicles.