The days of bigger and more powerful vehicles consuming fossil fuels may be numbered. The Associated Press reports the growth of hybrid cars and more fuel-efficient vehicles will dominate the automobile industry over the next five years.

The prediction comes from an annual survey of automobile executives. Eight-two percent expect gas-electric vehicles to gain market share. That's a no-brainer as very few of the vehicles currently exist. A six-month waiting list for certain models is not that unusual.

Only 35 percent of the executives surveyed expect the luxury automobile market to grow. More than twice that number say low-cost, fuel-efficient vehicles will gain market share in the next five years.

Oddly enough, Asian and European executives expected growth in the SUV market. Asians predicted growth in pickup truck sales while U.S. executives were the least optimistic on that segment of the market.

The KPMG survey said fuel prices shifted the preference to more efficient and hybrid cars. Their research affirms our straw poll that consumers will change their transportation habits when gasoline reaches about $3 per gallon.

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