By the end of September 2012, there were around 6,000 electric vehicle charging points in the UK we learn from businessGreen.

MyPerfectAutomobile tells us about a hybrid conversion kit that works with any car.

By 2020 the Philippines hopes to have 30% of public vehicles running on alternative fuels says Manila Standard Today. The government plans to achieve this goal by raising the biofuel blend by up to 20% by 2030, increasing the number of compressed natural gas and auto-LPG vehicles, plying  and massively deploying EVs starting off with electric tricycles.

The US state of Oregon is considering a per-mile road use tax for EVs we learn from Torque News. Previously we mentioned that the neigbhouring state of Washington will impose a flat fee per year on EVs as of February 1st.  Now Oregon is considering a tax too, but a per mile tax to cover the cost of building and maintaining highways. Traditionally this money has come from taxes on the price of gasoline and diesel which drivers pay when they pump fuel into their car. Since EV drivers do not use gasoline, they avoid paying the tax. Oregon is looking at various ways of collecting the tax and is considering putting legislation before the state legislature later this year. “Eventually electric vehicle owners will have to pay their fair share of road usage fees. The questions are, when, how much, and how it will be collected.”

People living in the north of the US state of California drive the most hybrids says Forbes. Auto market research firm, Polk, finds 10% of car buyers in San Francisco purchase a hybrid, the rate highest in the country. California leads the nation in hybrid sales, with nine of the top 15 hybrid-markets in the US.

Inside EVs tells us about the new Fiat 500 EV. The US Environmental Protection Agency gives it the highest highway fuel efficiency of any electric car on the market – 122 MPGe city, 108 MPGe highway, and 116 MPGe combined. The driving range is 87-miles.

We also learn about 2012 plug-in EV sales for Australia and Norway from Inside EVs. Australia sold 212 EVs out of total car sales of 1.1 million. Norway did considerably better selling 4073 plug-in EVs and The Green Optimistic tells us why EVs are more popular in Norway than anywhere else.

From smartplanet we learn of a Pike Research study that forecasts global EV sales of 3.8 million by 2020. In 2012 only 120,000 plug-in EVs were sold worldwide. Pike says EV sales should experience a 40% growth rate when compared to just a 2% rate for the overall automobile market through the end of the decade. Going forward, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are expected to be more popular in the US and Latin America than battery electric vehicles because of their longer driving range. The opposite will be true for the rest of the world. Also, in 2020, the largest market for hybrids will be Japan and the US is expected to be the largest market for plug-in electric vehicles.

The New York Times tells us electric grid problems are slowing purchases of EVs in India. “The fledgling market for electric vehicles, which might help clean up the polluted air, is losing traction because customers aren’t confident they can fill up the battery.” Power outages are a common event in India and last summer that spread to 600 million for a period of a few days.  As a result, people are reluctant to invest in any electric vehicle, including electric bikes. Most of the country’s electric power comes from coal-fired plants, but  a combination of rising international coal prices and poor transportation from India’s mines have left some plants without enough fuel.

Environmental News Networks wants to know how can we improve the performance of batteries in electric cars. Researches at The Ohio State University are examining just that as they try to determine the factors that limit battery life as the battery ages.  This is an important question as studies show that limited battery life or “range anxiety” is a key barrier to people choosing to purchase EVs.




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