EV Report Highlights Consumers Growing Interest and Barriers

Forty-one percent of owners of gas-powered vehicles said they are very or somewhat likely to consider an all-electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle the next time they purchase a car, according to a report released by the Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative (SECC). SECC is a nonprofit organization that works to learn the wants and needs of energy consumers in North America, encourages the collaborative sharing of best practices in consumer engagement among industry stakeholders, and educates the public about the benefits of smart energy and energy technology.

The “Electric Vehicles: Driving the Customer Experience” report, which was developed from an online survey of 1,750 Americans, offers electricity providers and other stakeholders insights into consumers’ knowledge and attitudes about electric vehicles (EVs) as well as the habits and experiences of current EV drivers.

According to the survey data, EV owners are overwhelmingly satisfied with their cars (8.9 on a 10-point scale) and are much more interested in smart home devices and energy efficiency. Their ownership of smart appliances is double that of the general population (34 percent vs. 14 percent), and they are four times more likely to own a home energy management system (16 percent vs. four percent).

When asked about reasons to save energy at home, environmental benefits (83 percent vs. 68 percent), concern for future generations (82 percent vs. 65 percent) and social responsibility (80 percent vs. 62 percent) play more of a role for EV owners than the general population.

However, for non-owners, the report notes a lack of familiarity and knowledge about EVs, their batteries and charging infrastructure. Only one-quarter (26 percent) have a friend or family member with an EV, and even fewer have ridden in or driven an EV (17 percent and nine percent).

Among consumers who are unlikely to consider an EV, half are “concerned that the battery will not have enough range to get me to where I need to go”. Forty-eight percent are concerned about maintenance and battery costs, and 47 percent are concerned that the battery will not be reliable or will leave them stranded. This lack of education is a key area of opportunity for electricity providers and other stakeholders.

Learn more about Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative and the free executive summary report can be downloaded here

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Taylor Graham, marketing grad with an inner nature to be a perpetual researchist, currently all things IT. Personally and professionally, Taylor is one to know with her tenacity and encouraging spirit. When not working you can find her spending time with friends and family.