I'm very skeptical of battery powered outdoor equipment for many reasons.
1. Lack of industry standard, that is enforceable.
2. Unrealistic product development.
3. Lack of unified testing standards.
4. Battery power has improved and is convenient for small compact hand tools, but is still very inefficient for tools that consume large amounts of energy. Keep in mind, as far as I know, we aren't talking about Tesla's AC power, it's still DC.
5. The industry is mis-leading to consumers.
The first part of the article I have difficulty with is,
"Green Spaces Survey asking 1,579 U.S. consumers about their outdoor power equipment
preferences and opinions of professional landscaping companies that use eco-friendly tools."
Where were the 1579 U.S. consumers? If Husqvarna wanted a puff piece to promote and encourage interest in a product they are investing millions in and they surveyed consumers in communities like Davis, California, then the results would overwhelmingly be in favor of battery powered tools and their use. Most gas powered lawn care equipment is illegal there.
What is "eco-friendly"? What's the environmental impact of Lithium in the ground water? When was the last time someone was up on charges for dumping a used Li battery pack in their household garbage? They are ending up in the landfills.
I'm thinking if eco-friendly means environmentally friendly verses economically friendly, then it should start with the consumer. People in mass numbers still dump millions of prescription pills down the sink improperly, and our water systems have many of these chemicals in them permanently. Can you find someone to admit it, good luck, but someone is. If we can't get control over this in our society then how are we going to keep the Li from getting in the ground. How is this environmentally friendlier than fuel in a realistic view. Don't get me wrong, I like the idea, but I question the idea actually delivering it's promise.
The next part,
"with 57 percent saying they would even be willing to pay more for a landscaper who uses quieter equipment."
It's easy to say this, but when the bills are due and most landscapers are working when the homeowners are working anyway, away from home, am I really to believe this is going to matter when the money is flowing out faster every year?
This is telling of what I think Husqvarna actually thinks of it's customers, “They think the noise equals power.”
That's their words, not mine. I think most North Americans at least understand HP as a way of understanding power, it's in our culture.
A typical gas powered riding mower is 25hp or there about, with 4 gallons fuel and an instant recharge of fuel in 5 gallon jugs that are very cheap. An equivalent electric DC powered mower will require the battery storage and discharge of roughly 18,750 watts (1hp=750 watts x 25). That's 18KW of power per hour and batteries that start to look like ones that fit in a Toyota Prius. What about the recharge time and batteries on hand that are charged, very expensive. If it's 48volts than it's 390 Ah, wow a short in the field and you are very crispy, this doesn't sound friendly.
Ok, so there are some riders out their that are battery powered and being used without all that wattage, true. But the watts, volts, and amps, are not even close to the power, performance, and affordability long term that current fuel models and technology provide, r-e-l-i-a-b-l-y.
I would prefer diesel over gas and I like my battery powered hand tools for convenience, but when it's serious use for hand tools, I still have corded equivalents that are much more powerful. I have a push mower I bought for $140 from HD and if I wanted to I could get away with zero maintenance for two years and when it sputters, get a new one and financially be ahead with all the power of gas.
They are saying at Husqvarna, they believe the future is batteries? Burn fuel to create electricity, the consumer pays top dollar for that electricity and charges a battery that at best when new will deliver 70% of that purchased electricity, and this is the future?
An engineer evaluated this subject and the reality of electric lawn mowers, well written, worth a look, http://www.stevepake.com/...-lawn-mower-horsepower
It's no wonder why car manufacturers are looking for alternatives while meeting regulatory needs in the short term with batteries.