There are many other (large) industries that rely heavily on batteries. They've been heavily researched for over 100 years.
Yes, but so have ICEs, and they still suck. Only minor improvements in efficiency have been realized in the last forty years. A forty year old turbo diesel still provides pretty good thermodynamic efficiency. It does it without producing much CO2 as a result, although it will tend to crank out quite a bit of NOx. Over that time, automotive ICE efficiency has improved by only in the low double digit percents, while electric motor efficiency has about doubled — and it's over three times as good as an ICE.
Cars are fun, I like engine noises as much as or even more than the next guy, but ICEs blow.