Posted on November 13, 2016 by Matt Pressman
Remember listening to music on CDs? Sure, it was better than tapes, but, it wasn't long before MP3s made the Sony Walkman obsolete. In that same vein, hybrid tech might be better than the internal combustion engine, but, the hybrid's expiration date is fast-approaching as lithium-ion battery tech takes over with electric cars. Indeed — according to The Memo via the Glass Motoring Guide*, "Electric cars have hybrids in a death grip. The story of hybrid cars might be coming to a swift end." According to Glass’s Rupert Pontin, "We predict hybrids are likely to be a passing phase in car technology that will be surpassed by electric vehicles [EVs] in a matter of a few years."
Above: Looking at the evolution of car technology, the electric vehicle — led by Tesla — will lead us into the future as antiquated hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and gas-powered vehicles will fall further and further behind (Image: Car and Driver)
Pontin explains, "EV technology is advancing so quickly that a new hybrid vehicle being bought today could be effectively obsolete by the time it reaches the end of its normal life. Hybrids are designed to solve two of the problems that EVs have faced in recent years – high cost and low range. However, there are very clear signs that these issues are being resolved very quickly. For example, the revised Renault Zoe announced at Paris Motor Show has a 250-mile range and... Volkswagen is claiming that its IQ, which will come to market in 2020, will go up to 373 miles between charges and be priced competitively."
Above: Bloomberg reports that electric car sales are up, "448,000 last year from 52,000 six years ago — and those figures are on track to hit a record 647,000 this year." (Source: Bloomberg)
This doesn't even take into consideration the true electric vehicle leader, Tesla Motors [NASDAQ: TSLA] with its disruptive ~400,000 reservations for the Model 3, coming next year, which has (at least) a 200 mile range starting at $35,000. Also coming soon is GM's Chevy Bolt with similar specs. Looking back in time, The Memo notes, "Toyota’s first Prius and Audi’s Duo III, both launched in 1997, were the first truly mass-market hybrids... [but] Pontin’s advice for hybrid owners? Maybe it’s time to get rid [of them] sooner rather than later.... RIP hybrids, we barely knew you."
Above: Hybrid mainstays like the Toyota Prius could be under massive threat from hugely popular new electric cars like the Tesla Model 3 (Image: Toyota on the Trail)
Pontin concludes, "The fact is that [electric] vehicles such as this effectively remove the rationale for hybrids. Within a few years, hybrids could be seen as little more than a curiosity and this will undoubtedly affect their values... [and] hybrids will simply be seen as a passing phase in the history of the car." Goodbye hybrid, hello electric.