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Electric automobiles, Hybrid electric vehicles, Data envelopment analysis, Technological forecasting


The Toyota Prius was first introduced in 1997 and since then over 150 hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) have been brought to the automobile market around the world. This was spurred by a major interest in the future of vehicles using ‘alternative fuel’ for addressing environmental and fuel dependency concerns. Based upon previous work1, which identified an input-output model that could successfully explain the progress of HEV technologies, this study evaluates and compares the technological advancement observed in different HEV market segments over the past 15 years. The results indicate that the introduction of a wide range of midsize HEVs is posing a threat to the two-seaters and compact HEV segments while an SUV segment shows a fast adoption with a significant performance improvement. The rates of change for each segment are also provided to give insights into the estimation of the future performance levels for new product development target setting purposes.


NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Technological Forecasting and Social Change. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication.

A definitive version was subsequently published in Technological Forecasting and Social Change (2014) and can be found online at:



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