Consolidated sales within the global microcars market have been forecast to reach1.8 million units by 2018, primarily driven by factors such as growing traffic congestion in urban areas, rising fuel prices, ecological concerns and launch of new efficient models.
The global vehicle industry has undergone significant transformation in the past few decades in terms of vehicle design, features, production costs and affordability. The resultant upsurge in vehicle population and the rise in fuel prices have compelled governments and manufacturers to seek alternative options for achieving higher fuel economy and low carbon footprint.
As the financial crisis continues to weaken consumer confidence and vehicular traffic becomes more congested, automotive manufacturers are coming out with smaller and efficient vehicles to meet these problems. Amidst this scenario, microcars have been witnessing healthy growth over the past few years with several automakers entering the space to address the increasing demand.
A microcar is the smallest automobile classification, usually applied to very small cars (smaller than city cars). Such small cars were generally referred to as cycle cars until the 1940s. More recent models (1960 and later) are also called bubble cars due to their bubble-shaped appearance.
Most microcar manufacturers are shifting from fuel-driven cars to battery-operated cars in line with the changing environmental regulations and concerns. Increasing concerns about climate change and the pressing need to prepare for fossil fuel independent future have prompted both developed and developing countries to step up research, manufacture, and deployment of energy-efficient transport systems.
Electromobility offers a potentially groundbreaking solution to change today's fuel dependent transport system and make a leap towards sustainable mobility.
According to a latest report, 'Microcars: A Global Market Report,' Japan represents the largest market for microcars. Kei cars which are microcars of Japanese origin are a popular means of short distance commute in Japan. Amidst favorable factors such as ecological concerns, shrinking family size and government initiatives such as tax exemptions, preferential tax policy and infrastructure development schemes, minicars have been recording impressive growth in Japan in recent times.
The segment dominated new car sales in the country with over 35% share of total volume sales in 2012. Additionally, various leading car manufacturers such as Daihatsu, Mitsubishi and Suzuki are working towards electrification of Kei cars in order to tap future opportunities.
For more information on the global microcars market, see the latest research: Microcars Market Research
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