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Sustainability 2019, 11(8), 2262; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11082262

Ownership and Usage Analysis of Alternative Fuel Vehicles in the United States with the 2017 National Household Travel Survey Data

1
Institute of Thermal Science and Technology, Shandong University, Jinan 250061, China
2
Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center, 6300 Georgetown Pike, McLean, VA 22101, USA
3
School of Transportation Engineering, Shandong Jianzhu University, Jinan 250101, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 March 2019 / Revised: 10 April 2019 / Accepted: 11 April 2019 / Published: 15 April 2019
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Abstract

By using the 2017 National Household Travel Survey (NHTS) data, this study explores the status quo of ownership and usage of conventional vehicles (CVs) and alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs), i.e., Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEVs), Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs) and Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs), in the United States. The young ages of HEVs (6.0 years), PHEVs (3.2 years) and BEVs (3.1 years) demonstrate the significance of the 2017 NHTS data. The results show that after two decades of development, AFVs only occupy about 5% of annual vehicle sales, and their share does not show big increases in recent years. Meanwhile, although HEVs still dominate the AFV market, the share of PHEVs & BEVs has risen to nearly 50% in 2017. In terms of ownership, income still seems to be a major factor influencing AFV adoption, with the median annual household incomes of CVs, HEVs, PHEVs and BEVs being $75,000, $100,000, $150,000 and $200,000, respectively. Besides, AFV households are more likely to live in urban areas, especially large metropolitan areas. Additionally, for AFVs, the proportions of old drivers are much smaller than CVs, indicating this age group might still have concerns regarding adopting AFVs. In terms of travel patterns, the mean and 85th percentile daily trip distances of PHEVs and HEVs are significantly larger than CVs, followed by BEVs. BEVs might still be able to replace CVs for meeting most travel demands after a single charge, considering most observed daily trip distances are fewer than 93.5 km for CVs. However, the observed max daily trip distances of AFVs are still much smaller than CVs, implying increasing the endurance to meet extremely long-distance travel demands is pivotal for encouraging consumers to adopt AFVs instead of CVs in the future. View Full-Text
Keywords: alternative fuel vehicle; hybrid electric vehicle; plug-in hybrid electric vehicle; battery electric vehicle; 2017 National Household Travel Survey; ownership; travel patterns alternative fuel vehicle; hybrid electric vehicle; plug-in hybrid electric vehicle; battery electric vehicle; 2017 National Household Travel Survey; ownership; travel patterns
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Li, X.; Liu, C.; Jia, J. Ownership and Usage Analysis of Alternative Fuel Vehicles in the United States with the 2017 National Household Travel Survey Data. Sustainability 2019, 11, 2262.

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