However, a recent study shows that NGVs have been widely adopted in other parts of the world. The report, issued by Pike Research, shows that the total number of NGVs on the roads is expected to reach a level of 11.3 million by the end of the year, with three quarters of the volume belonging to Latin America, the Middle East and Africa.
“The use of NGVs is driven by four key factors: economics, environmental benefits, energy security, and availability of vehicles and fuel" says senior analyst Dave Hurst. "What many leading NGV markets have in common is that they are oil-producing countries that have an inexpensive supply of natural gas, yet they do not have strong petroleum refinement capabilities. Therefore, it makes economic sense for these countries to use natural gas to fuel vehicles at home, and export crude oil for refinement elsewhere."
Hurst also said that one of the strongest factors that influences the acceptance of CNG vehicles is the refueling infrastructure and added that the world leader in the field is Pakistan (3,000 operational stations in 2010), followed by Argentina and Brazil.
However, the study shows that the markets with the greatest potential for NGVs are the U.S. and certain European countries. These rely on government and fleet contracts for the spreading of CNG.