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Electric energy forms the backbone of modern civilization. Efficient energy consumption is the key to solving the 21st century global issues on climate change. Electric motors consume over 65% of the world's generated electrical power, and hence improvements in the efficiency of motors make significant imprints on reduction of its consumption. A close examination reveals that different technological advancements and market forces have combined sometimes in fortuitous ways to accelerate the development of high-efficiency interior permanent magnet (IPM) synchronous motors. The objective of this article is to provide a short introduction to the recent emergence of high-efficiency and high-performance IPM synchronous motors for applications such as in automobiles and air conditioners to reduce global warming and save energy.