Dear Valued Visitor,

We have noticed that you are using an ad blocker software.

Although advertisements on the web pages may degrade your experience, our business certainly depends on them and we can only keep providing you high-quality research based articles as long as we can display ads on our pages.

To view this article, you can disable your ad blocker and refresh this page or simply login.

We only allow registered users to use ad blockers. You can sign up for free by clicking here or you can login if you are already a member.

Westport Innovations Inc. (USA) (WPRT), Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA): Electric vs. Natural Gas Vehicles

Join The Motley Fool’s Austin Smith for a chat with Sandeep Munshi, director of technology and development at Westport Innovations Inc. (USA) (NASDAQ:WPRT). Based in Vancouver and with facilities in eight other countries, Westport Innovations Inc. (USA) (NASDAQ:WPRT) is the industry leader in natural gas engines and vehicles.

Light-duty electric vehicles are great in cities, but Sandeep discusses the greater versatility of natural gas — suitable for both light and heavier vehicles — as well as the economic differences between the two technologies.

Austin Smith: From a pure engine performance aspect, it would look to be that something like an electric engine would have many of the same benefits as a natural gas engine; say, high torque on demand, low cost of operation.

I’m wondering how you think about that and maybe a company like Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA), and whether or not their offerings are a threat to natural gas engines, or where they would stand in relation to the products that you guys are offering.

Sandeep Munshi: Interesting question. Tesla Motors Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA), the whole story with electric vehicles or electric cars, it’s a new technology. It’s an emerging area of technology.

Will Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA) CEO make Ford Motor Company (F) CEO Jealous with this Payout?

Yes, as you mentioned, electric cars do have some performance and efficiency benefits, but if you look at the overall scheme of things that comparison only goes so far because electric vehicles currently — and hopefully in the near future — are limited to urban transport, passenger cars, more light-duty vehicles.

Whereas, when we talk about natural gas we’re talking from very small engines, light-duty passenger cars, to commercial vehicles, trucks and very large marine, locomotive engines, off-road, industrial engines, so the spectrum is very large when it comes to natural gas engines.

Electric vehicles are an application that’s limited, as I say, to urban markets. That’s one difference.

The other difference is, cost-wise, EVs — or electric vehicles — are significantly more expensive. Even though they are more efficient, what I read in the media the payback period could be much longer to recover the initial cost of the electric vehicle that you pay for.

These are some of the differences between, say, a natural gas vehicle and an electric vehicle.

The article Electric vs. Natural Gas Vehicles originally appeared on Fool.com and is written by Austin Smith.

Austin Smith has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Westport Innovations. The Motley Fool owns shares of Westport Innovations.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Loading Comments...