Every year, along with reporters and editors from Car & Driver, Motortrend and other specialty car geeks, I go to the Los Angeles Auto Show and ogle the future of cars.
It’s a beauty contest of machines with bright showroom lights bouncing off shiny bodies as they rotate before us on round platforms. Every single one has that intoxicating new car smell, plus this and that new feature for comfort and performance.
I love seeing them all, but I’m really there for the electric vehicles (EVs) since I devote a lot of my life to getting them on to the roads in greater numbers. We’re making solid progress, with over a quarter of a million driving on America’s roads today, but this is just the beginning.
To the extent an auto show can approach the futuristic vision on display at a World’s Fair, it’s largely due to the EVs, which represent the most important evolution in automotive technology since we ditched the steam engine.
The big news in the EVs we see this year, and one of the reasons for their growth in popularity, is they are the most efficient vehicles on the market and are only becoming more and more efficient.
Let’s take a look at the trends in EPA “Miles-per-gallon-equivalent (MPGe)” ratings for the eight best-selling plug-in vehicles (which comprise 90% of 2014 sales: