By 2020 all new vehicles will have some level of hybridization, according to IBM’s Automotive 2020 Study.
Hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles will remain a viable alternative, but projections put only a small fraction of vehicle production migrating to this technology by 2020, due to cost-prohibitive processes and new infrastructures. Bio-fuels will also see their share of investments, and non-food-based bio-fuels will grow.
In addition, industry experts predict that flexible transportation services will replace the purchase of personal vehicles for multiple uses, and intelligent vehicles will cater to consumer demands for greater information, safety, and environmental responsibility.
The study concludes that consumers will expect to purchase or lease a vehicle that comes with flexible access to a diverse “garage” of vehicles. Consumers will drive a primary vehicle that best meets their daily needs, and have the option to change to a different model, as needed.
The IBM Automotive 2020 Global Study is based on interviews with 125 executives in 15 countries from automotive OEMs, suppliers, and other thought leaders. Eighty-five percent of the top automotive companies worldwide — including all of the top 10 — participated.