Majority of U.S. Consumers Would Buy Electric Vehicles

April 26, 2011
Preference is for plug-in hybrid electric rather than electric-only cars

A new study found that 85% of U.S. consumers say they would purchase a battery-driven car either right away (3%), when their current car needed replacement (57%), or when the technology is proven and it becomes more mainstream (25%) the study was done by.E Source which recently analyzed data from the Nielsen Energy Survey.

Consumers strongly prefer (58%) plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) versions such as the Chevrolet Volt.
This is due to the fact that PHEVs have greater range than electric-only cars like the Nissan Leaf and only 8% of consumers prefer them.

"We are seeing a substantial willingness for drivers to move to plug-in electric vehicles, but only if the manufacturers can provide the easy extended range of travel that Americans are used to," says Bill LeBlanc, senior advisor at E Source.

The report also found that younger drivers are more willing than older drivers to purchase the electric-only cars. "We see that all ages and all political mindsets like the plug-in hybrid vehicles equally," says LeBlanc. "But when it comes to the all-electric car, it appears to be seen as more of a 'green' purchase, rather than as a practical upgrade to a more-efficient vehicle."

Daily driving habits don't seem to affect desire for the all-electric vehicle; however, desire for the PHEV grows as people spend more time in their cars. "Overall, the survey supports the existence of a huge untapped market for electric vehicles that can be charged at night at home. People seem very ready to move to the next generation of cars and dramatically decrease the frequency of their visits to the gas station," reports LeBlanc.

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