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Note that the attractiveness of these technological ICE advances is that they make the ICE more like an EV with respect to reducing gas consumption and gas pollution. In addition, autonomous driving is forcing the added cost of 48V technology in ICEs to provide electricity. All this demonstrates that companies are finding it necessary to increase the cost of ICEs in order to achieve benefits that EVs are inherently better able to provide. The trend then is for rising ICE costs.

I don't see where that follows. Mild-hybrid technology was around for much longer than any real movement towards AV's. It was first really implemented during the rising gas prices in the mid-2000's, in response to consumer demand for more fuel efficiency. Not the need for AV's.

The same is true now. Automakers have continued to invest in ICE fuel efficiency. You're seeing greater adoption of stop/start and mild hybrid systems not because they are aimed at the AV market, but because that tech has already reached price parity. Mild hybrid systems are now cheap enough that they are cost effective purely on their fuel savings. EV's aren't "inherently better" able to provide those benefits - it's just a function of the cost of the tech relative to the benefits of avoided fuel costs.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but my understanding is that "price parity" in this context does not mean that EV's will have the same sticker price as ICE's, but rather the same cost of ownership and use as ICE cars:

The total cost of ownership, which includes fuel and other running costs, will draw level with traditionally powered vehicles next year in Europe, and in 2023 in China and 2025 in the US, it forecasts.

Cost-effective improvements to the ICE might raise the sticker price, but they also lower the fuel/running costs. If they lower the fuel/running costs more than they raise the sticker price (recognizing that one is an annual cost and the other is an upfront cost, so use whatever NPV for both ICE and EV's), then they can expand the price gap between ICE's and EV's. Manufacturers developing better ways to provide fuel economy in the ICE doesn't help EV's take more market share.

The actions of the major car companies to rapidly expand their EV lines over the next 5-10 years are consistent with their agreement with that conclusion.

Sure seems like they're still willing to invest in their ICE products. They're developing and upgrading technology that's only relevant to an ICE vehicle. That's not an action that's consistent with them thinking that their product is going to start getting banned from major markets in the next decade or so.

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