- According to a new survey by Autolist, the top reasons for not buying an EV were range, price, and charging, with c. 40% of respondents concerned about these issues.
- The author makes the argument that these concerns are outdated, as EV prices are already below US$30k (after fuel cost advantage), provide a range of ~250miles, and the are thousands of charging points every where in the US.
- One of the positive insights from the survey is that the majority of consumers (55%) now said they would use an EV as their primary vehicle rather than as a secondary vehicle (which was previously the top answer).
Analysis and Comments
- This article fits in well with the investor’s view as to the process by which EV uptake will occur
- The short version is that, as the article highlights, the key issue around EV adoption will be familiarity. For most consumers, current EVs are perfectly suitable for day to day use. Most of us just don’t drive far enough to need to recharge more than once a day (as with the person in this story). So the key is getting people to try one.
- This does not understate the charging infrastructure challenge; yes, there is a lot more that needs to be done to roll out charging stations, especially fast chargers. But this is a solvable problem.
- As with similar innovations, the adoption curve starts slowly and then rapidly accelerates – we expect to hit this inflection sometime in the mid 2020s. Tailwinds to this include tougher emission standards & city centre driving restrictions & potential headwinds include cutting of subsidies and a lack of affordable model choice.
The article also makes an important point:
- Auto makers don’t need to keep making the range further & further, if the cost is more expensive batteries & hence a very expensive EV. The alternative is cheaper shorter range EVs, possibly with a lease package that includes the occasional use of a petrol car for longer trips