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California Expects More Electric Cars On The Highways

An electric car is seen covered in colorful designs, May 16, 2016.
Nicholas McVicker
An electric car is seen covered in colorful designs, May 16, 2016.

California Expects More Electric Cars On The Highways
The state has 250,000 plug-in electric vehicles on the road and backers says that number will continue to go up.

The internal combustion engine still rules California's roads, but the number of electric-powered vehicles is continuing to climb.

The state's plug-in electrical vehicle collaborative says there are 250,000 hybrid-electric or fully electric cars in California. Even stronger gains are expected in coming years as more manufacturers add electric-powered cars to their fleets.

"California's stated goal is to get to a million and a half vehicles by 2025. We've got a long way to go but at some point, electric-vehicle driving will be the norm, not internal combustion engines," said Christine Kehoe, executive director of the Plug-in Electrical Vehicle Collaborative.

Plug-in vehicles only represent a small percentage of the total number of cars in the state, but Kehoe said the economics are changing.

"The cars are coming down in price," Kehoe said. "Batteries are much cheaper than they were. And there will be more than 30 plug-in vehicle models for sale in the next year or two, up from just a handful in 2011."