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Sustainable Mobility 

Klaus Feldmann
10 April 2023

Tens of millions of cars sell every year. That means every increase in a vehicle’s emissions is multiplied by millions, but equally, so is every reduction. We must therefore make vehicles as sustainable as possible.

But what does maximum sustainability look like? What fuel and propulsion methods should you use? What raw materials should you pursue? Where should you manufacture?

These big decisions will set corporate direction for years. They must properly analyse the full life cycle impact of any choice, whilst also considering systems outside of their control, from land, to energy infrastructure, to competition from other industries.

To take a top-level example, what is the most sustainable vehicle propulsion method – Electric, Hydrogen and E-fuels? We need to understand the full life cycle – by performing an integrative Life Cycle Assessment – in order to reliably make the comparison.

So we would need to look at the original fuel (eg energy mix of grid, power source for an electrolyser, or biomass) and its emissions profile. Then we’d need to look at the energy efficiency of each step between the energy inputs and the vehicle’s propulsion. Then you can compare how much of each you need to produce the same amount of propulsion.

We must also look at the inputs of creating the propulsion system itself – such as battery or engine components and materials.

We can then combine these to work out the most sustainable option. Maximum sustainability will need to address the fuel, the vehicle design and the energy systems that power it. The results will of course vary in different scenarios.

Making good decisions needs highly sophisticated system-of-systems modeling, combining your own engineering and supply chain models with climate, energy, demographic and macroeconomic models.

In our new whitepaper offer an introduction to planning strategic decisions for a sustainable transition, and provide top level worked examples of propulsion and battery choices, alongside some initial answers.


Klaus Feldmann

CTO for Automotive Sustainability and e-Mobility, Capgemini Engineering
Klaus Feldmann is the Chief Technical Officer of our sustainability & e-Mobility Offers and Solutions for the Automotive industry supporting our customers in their path to carbon neutrality across their products and footprints and service to fight against climate change and contribute to a decarbonized economy.