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In the clean-transportation sector, for example, a Boston Consulting Group (BCG) study in July 2011 predicted that China will be the world’s largest market for EVs by 2020, surpassing Europe and the U.S. The study found that about 13 percent of consumers in China say they are willing to pay a premium of $4,500 to $6,000 for a green vehicle (EV or hybrid), compared with 9 percent of Europeans and just 6 percent of U.S. car buyers. BCG projects sales of five million EVs in China in 2020, up from just 2,000 in 2010. In India, pioneering EV manufacturer Mahindra Reva has opened more than 20 sales...
In the 21st century, however, the U.S. consumer market represents literally a tiny fraction of the overall picture. International commerce experts know, but many people are shocked to learn, that at least 95 percent of the world’s consumers live outside the U.S. Not surprisingly, the meteoric rise of China’s middle class leads the way. Credit Suisse predicts that China’s consumer market will reach $16 trillion by 2020, surpassing the U.S. as the world’s largest—with a projected 700 percent growth in per capita income from 2000 levels.
In 2000, fewer than 10,000 hybrid electric vehicles were being driven on U.S. roads, and only two models, the Honda Insight and the original Toyota Prius, were available worldwide. In 2010, more than 1.4 million U.S. motorists drove hybrids, and 30 models, from carmakers in Asia, the U.S., and Europe, were on the world auto market. Ford, the number-two automaker in the U.S., has predicted that by 2020, one of every four cars it sells will have electric power, either as a hybrid or as a 100 percent electric vehicle (EV).