The chief financial officer of Ford Motor Co. (NYSE: F) has warned that in the absence of government subsidies, electric cars might be so expensive that only the wealthy will be able to afford them.

The Daily Telegraph reported that , speaking at a convention in Geneva, Switzerland, where many of the top automakers have unveiled their new electric/hybrid vehicles, Lewis Booth said: electric vehicles at the moment are still very expensive and have limitations. There is a question mark about how long governments can subsidize vehicles when they are under so much pressure from other funding issues.”

Booth also added that some of the sales projections... for electric vehicles are very ambitious because I am not sure how customers are going to be able to afford to pay. Our philosophy is that we have a suite of technologies, from continuing to improve conventional vehicles, right through to plug-ins, hybrids and electric vehicles. The customer is going to decide and we want to satisfy all customers, not just rich customers.

Booth also said that he wants to see European automakers adopt a more rational behavior and an end to “excessive” incentive rates.

We'd like to see a more rational marketplace, he told reporters. People are incentivizing cars so heavily it's not a long-term rational strategy. We'd like to see the European market stabilize.