Canadian Transportation Council |  Medium-Heavy Duty Vehicle Committee | Electric Vehicle Council

Back to the Future: 10 Years of Lessons Learned About the Vehicle Market

Date: August 3, 2023 PDF: 7.05 MB

In 2013, we released our first report entitled, “Tomorrow’s Vehicles – What will we drive in 2023?” Now that it actually is 2023, the Institute has teamed up with Guidehouse Insights (whose analysis powered that report back in 2013 when they were known as Navigant Research) to review those forecasts and evaluate what major developments have occurred over the past 10 years that disrupted the market’s trajectory. Understanding what changed and why might better prepare us to critically review the uncertainties of current forecasts about the transportation energy market. 

In this report, five events that were impossible to predict in 2013 take center stage in our assessment:  

  • The oil price collapse of 2014 
  • “Dieselgate”  
  • Tesla’s string of successes from the Model S to the Model 3 debut 
  • Emergence of anti-internal combustion engine (ICE) regulation 
  • The pandemic  

These events not only shifted the market trajectory, but also exemplify the limitations of prediction relative to what the narrative suggests is reasonable at any given time.  

Looking ahead, the report takes into account some reasonable assumptions about the future of the market but acknowledges the uncertainty inherent in projecting the future. As the market continues to move toward net-zero, we can only expect that more of the unknowns will become known and we must do our best to prepare for unexpected trends that might survive and those which may not. 

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