Department of Business Development and Technology

Gerardo Zarazua de Rubens

The market case for electric mobility: Investigating electric vehicle business models for mass adoption

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

Electric vehicles (EVs) are becoming the next automotive technology to be widely diffused in society. However, many structural challenges remain to be addressed around the EV socio-technical system as the technology progresses from a niche to early and late mass markets. This study investigates the challenges for electric vehicles focusing on their current and future business implications. For this purpose, we rely on a robust sample of 227 semi-structured interviews, conducted by the authors, with transportation and electricity experts from 201 institutions across seventeen cities in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. Our findings show that EVs currently face an unfavourable business case, led by the legacy of the petrol and diesel car industries, and national market conditions. This results in an unsuitable business model and supply chain that compromises EV production and market offerings. Additionally, we find that for wide diffusion in society, EVs will change the traditional automotive selling chain, directly affecting selling methods (i.e. dealerships), maintenance revenue streams and refuelling (recharging) structures. It is therefore essential to adopt new models, practices and methods of business that are suitable for EV diffusion.

Original languageEnglish
Article number116841
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2020

    Research areas

  • Adoption, Business, Charging infrastructure, Electric vehicle, Profitability

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