Hybrids – Vehicles, Battery & Hydraulic Technology

Commercial Trucks Will Be Among the Fastest-Growing Markets for Hybrid Drivetrain

December 22, 2010

BOULDER, CO - In the face of rising fuel costs and stricter emissions regulations in many parts of the world, fleet operators are increasingly looking to hybrid drivetrain designs to help make their medium- and heavy-duty trucks cleaner and more fuel efficient. While truck manufacturers and suppliers have been in the early stages of hybrid vehicle launches for several years, the market has yet to achieve significant sales volumes. However, a recent report from Pike Research forecasts that the hybrid truck sector will reach an inflection point over the next few years, increasing from just 9,000 vehicles sold in 2010 to more than 100,000 vehicles annually in 2015.

"Payback periods on hybrid drivetrains are improving for medium and heavy-duty truck classes, particularly as oil prices continue to rise," says senior analyst Dave Hurst. "An increased focus on efficiency and regulatory compliance among fleet managers, combined with a variety of new models being introduced by truck manufacturers, will lead to substantial growth in this market over the next five years."

Hurst adds that there are five types of hybrid systems that can be implemented on board medium-duty and heavy-duty vehicles: (1) hybrid electric , (2) plug-in hybrid electric, (3) battery electric, (4) mild electric power take-off (EPTO) hybrids, and (5) hydraulic hybrids.

Among these options, Pike Research forecasts that hybrid electric trucks will be the largest segment between now and 2015. Fleets with local delivery trucks will be strong candidates for battery electric vehicles. Pike Research does not anticipate a sizable opportunity for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) in the medium- and heavy-duty truck markets.

Pike Research's study, "Hybrid Trucks and Buses", analyzes the opportunities and challenges in the market for hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery electric medium and heavy-duty trucks and buses. The report provides a comprehensive examination of hybrid and battery technologies, along with key drivers of demand from medium/heavy-duty truck fleet customers. The report also explores global government regulations related to diesel emissions and hybrid purchase incentives. It includes detailed forecasts through 2015 for commercial vehicle registrations, hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery electric medium and heavy-duty trucks segmented by country and world region, as well as bus fleets for the United States. Key market players are also profiled. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the firm's website.

Pike Research is a market research and consulting firm that provides in-depth analysis of global clean technology markets. The company's research methodology combines supply-side industry analysis, end-user primary research and demand assessment, and deep examination of technology trends to provide a comprehensive view of the Smart Energy, Clean Transportation, Clean Industry, and Building Efficiency sectors. For more information, visit www.pikeresearch.com or call (303) 997-4619.

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