Shoppers Continue To Warm To EVs

By Staff Writer June 23, 2022 211

Auto shoppers in America are more likely than ever before to consider buying a fully electric vehicle, and new EV entries are responsible for much of the added interest. These new entries, many from long-established vehicle manufacturers, are turning EV skeptics into likely EV considerers, according to the J.D. Power 2022 U.S. Electric Vehicle Consideration (EVC) Study, released today.

The percentage of shoppers who say they are “very likely” to consider an EV for their next purchase or lease climbs to 24%, four percentage points higher than a year ago. Several factors are at work in prompting the increase, but the introduction of new electric models—some of which are in an important and largely untapped segment such as pickup trucks—is a primary reason for the increased consumer interest.

“The addition of new EV models has moved the needle on consumer consideration,” said Stewart Stropp, senior director of automotive retail at J.D. Power. “In fact, several new models from perennial mass market brands are at the top of that consideration list. Even so, more remains to be done in terms of transitioning from early to mass adoption. Though the study findings show a shift in favor of EVs, about 76% of new-vehicle shoppers say they are not ‘very likely’ to consider buying one. With new EV model introductions coming at a rapid pace, automakers must continue their efforts to persuade more shoppers to give these vehicles a try.”

One hurdle to EV adoption revolves around shoppers’ living and working situations. There is a substantially higher ratio of shoppers who own their home who say they are “very likely to consider” an EV (27%) than those who rent (17%). Not only are homeowners more affluent, on average, but are more likely to be able to charge an EV at their residence. Perhaps most tellingly, 34% of those who indicate they are unlikely to consider purchasing an EV say they lack access to any charging capabilities at home or work.

The study, now in its second year, finds that the more vehicle owners drive, the more they are likely to consider an EV. While daily commuters who are encountering higher fuel prices are logical candidates to switch to EVs, those who take frequent vacations and road trips might be assumed to be less likely to adopt EVs. But, like heavy commuters, heavy road-trippers have a higher EV purchase consideration tendency than those who use their vehicles less often for this purpose. It could be an indication that frequent drivers are increasingly seeing the advantages of EVs compared with their gasoline-powered counterparts.  

Still, as the number of EV models proliferates, auto manufacturers must seek to convert the large percentage of EV shoppers who say they are “somewhat likely” to consider into actual customers. The study points out a key opportunity to accomplish that: expose EVs to those shoppers who have never driven, ridden in or even sat in such a vehicle.

Echoing last year’s findings, the 2022 study reveals that firsthand experience with EVs plays an important role in purchase consideration. Only 11% of study respondents who had no personal experience at all with EVs say they are “very likely” to consider an EV. That percentage more than doubles to 24% among those new-vehicle shoppers who have simply been a passenger in an EV and rises to 34% among those who have driven an EV. Owners of EVs are also sold on the technology, as 48% of owners say they are “very likely” to consider another EV for their next vehicle purchase.

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Last modified on Tuesday, 28 June 2022 12:50