The electromobility revolution is gathering speed, but most of the public is still unaware of what’s going on. A recent survey of 2,557 Americans by Altman Vilandrie & Company found limited awareness of EVs. About 60 percent of respondents picked the multiple-choice answers “I’ve never heard of electric vehicles” or “I’ve heard of electric vehicles but I don’t know much about them.” 80 percent said they had never driven or ridden in an electric car.
Three percent of respondents said they currently own an EV, and 10 percent said they planned to buy one. 60 percent of consumers who have experienced an EV say they “enjoyed” it, and only 8 percent did not.
Reasons for not buying an EV were the usual: 83 percent said they cost too much; 85 percent said existing charging infrastructure is inadequate; and 74 percent say charging takes too long.
Younger and wealthier consumers are more likely EV buyers: 17 percent of respondents earning $100,000 or more and 18 percent of 25-34-year-olds plan on making an EV their next car.
Older drivers (over 65) said they were more likely buy an EV from Ford or Volkswagen, while young drivers (18-24) preferred Tesla. Overall, Tesla and VW were the most likely brands for a potential purchase.
Unsurprisingly, the survey found that the EV market would grow significantly if prices were lower. For example, Tesla’s $35,000 Model 3 is expected to generate up five times more sales than the pricier Models S and X. Altman Vilandrie estimates that if other automakers released models in that price range, it would boost EV adoption by nearly 24 times the current market.
“There are signs of strong latent demand in the marketplace,” said Moe Kelley, co-director of the survey. “The auto industry still needs to make more low-priced models available to consumers as well as finding a way for more drivers to try out an EV. If those things happen, we should see the EV adoption rate accelerate.”