A new study from automotive data experts hpi has revealed that consumers feel they don’t know enough about electric vehicles to tempt them to switch.
The study*, carried out in conjunction with Leeds Beckett University, also reveals that over 95% of motorists would feel extremely safe when driving an electric vehicle. Over two thirds said they would be happy to buy a used EV vehicle.
The insight follows the bold announcement that all new cars launched by Volvo from 2019 onwards will be partially or completely battery-powered. Between 2019 and 2021, Volvo will introduce five 100% EVs and ensure the rest of its conventional petrol and diesel range has a hybrid engine of some form.
Fuel giant Shell has also announces a pilot project for the installation and operation of the first fast chargers for electric vehicles at selected Shell service stations. The project will include selected charging sites at Shell stations in the UK and in The Netherlands with fast chargers expected to be operational at all selected locations by the end of 2017. The first chargers are due to open in Greater London, Derby and the western part of the Netherlands (Randstad).
Consumer interest in electric vehicles is soaring. The market for alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFVs) saw a record market share of 4.4% in June with more than 10,700 hitting the roads, a rise of 29.0%. Yet while sales continue to soar many motorists admit to struggling to separate the reality from fiction when it comes to EVs.
The study reveals that awareness of the range of EVs is low with a lack of knowledge about charging capabilities and longevity amongst almost three quarters (70%) of consumers.
Over 60,000 new AFVs have joined Britain’s roads so far this year. The overall used market for electric vehicles has seen gains with residual values increasing by 7 percent this year.
Fernando Garcia, Consumer Director, at hpi commented: “Alternative fuel vehicles including EVs and hybrids are growing in popularity year on year but the automotive industry needs to work with the Government to do more to convince people of the benefits and shoot down some of the myths. It’s apparent that consumers feel that they don’t have enough information about life with an electric vehicle. This represents a huge opportunity for the manufacturers to engage with motorists. It is therefore critical that the OEM dealer network is equipped to address the concerns of the consumer.
“With the distances covered by the average motorist being relatively short, fully electric cars are well suited to the vast majority of regular journeys. Plug-in hybrids can also provide a good balance between range and efficiency plus the economic benefits for motorists can be enormous, offering big savings on fuel and tax costs as well as much lower maintenance costs.”
*study conducted amongst 388 UK adults, July 2017.