In today’s world, there a big push for us to be eco-friendlier and more environmentally-conscious in our lives – and the emissions on our roads is one part of this. Over the past few years, electric cars and hybrids have been on the rise, becoming a common feature of our modern roads. These economic cars are a great way of decreasing your carbon footprint - but the search is still on for creating the perfect low-emissions car. The issue with electric and hybrid car is that the lithium-ion batteries found in these cars are not only costly to make, but they also cause a large amount of emissions in their creation – meaning that, though they are much more economical than regular diesel cars, they’re still far from perfect.
Developments in the renewable energy market mean that another debated contender for eco-friendly car technology is solar power. With solar panels falling in price and becoming more and more commonplace, the market predicts we will see the first solar powered cars by 2019.
"There is still room in the market for an eco-friendly car to reduce emissions".
With the technology becoming more affordable and easily available, we have already seen a Dutch solar car prototype in 2017, which resembles the classic family car, meaning solar might fit into our lives and roads more easily than we may expect. At the annual World Solar Challenge in 2017, the Dutch team Eindhoven made waves in the ‘cruiser class’ with Stella Vie – their 5 seater family car. It carried 5 people at an average speed of 69 km/h, which may not seem like much – but this solar car prototype is proof that this technology is on the rise. So, will we see solar cars on our roads by 2019?
Where the future of driving is heading to is still anybody’s guess – while the likes of electric and hybrid cars are undoubtedly on the rise, there is still room in the market for an eco-friendly car to reduce emissions. Should solar power continue to grow, it may just fill that gap and make our roads that little bit greener.