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Electric Vehicles Approach Popularity Tipping Point (Op-Ed)

Peter Lehner is executive director of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). This piece will appear on the NRDC blog Switchboard. Lehner contributed this article to LiveScience’s Expert Voices: Op-Ed & Insights.

When the first hybrid cars hit the streets, people would point and stare, even stop owners on the street to ask questions. Was it a fad? A novelty? A toy for green enthusiasts? Time has proven otherwise.

In the first quarter of last year, the hybrid Toyota Prius was the third-best-selling family car in the world. When the latest generation of plug-in electric cars hit the mass market three years ago, they evoked the same mix of reactions as hybrids did: enthusiasm, curiosity, and some skepticism. However, they’re selling at more than twice the rate at which the first widely available hybrids left dealers’ lots.
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