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Assuming the availability of a high energy and power density battery of 100 Wh/lb and 100 W/lb by the 1980' s, the energy consumption and efficiency of electric and heat engine cars are compared on an equal basis. This is achieved by considering a reference electric car of 3150-lb weight similar in body construction, aerodynamics, and rolling resistance to a conventional heat engine car of equal weight, and comparing the performance of the two cars over the same driving modes. The reference electric car is then used as a baseline to evaluate the possible improvements in future electric cars. The energy consumption for an optimized 2000-lb electric car of driving range, comfort, and performance comparable to a conventional car is estimated. Assuming a gradual growth in electric car population leading to their widespread use by the 1990's, the impact on electric power generation and distribution systems is estimated. Though the analysis is based on a high energy and power density battery the results may be extrapolated to electric cars using lower performance batteries. It is noted that batteries with lower energy density can provide sufficient driving range to fulfill a significant portion of our transportation needs and their continued development and improvement will accelerate the achievement of the high energy-density goal .