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Mass use of electric vehicles ‘still away’

Beirut, March 31, 2011

Despite rising fuel prices, mass adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) is still a distance away with only 16 per cent of European consumers identifying themselves as “first movers”, said a new survey.

The survey, conducted among 4,760 Europeans in seven countries, by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited’s (DTTL) Global Manufacturing Industry group, showed that while 53 per cent European consumers said they “might be willing to consider”, 31 per cent said they are “not likely to consider” purchasing or leasing an EV.

“Mass adoption of electric vehicles will be significantly influenced by a number of factors, including rising fuel prices, advancements in internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEs), and the availability of government incentives,” says Craig Giffi, automotive sector leader, Deloitte US.

“While interest in battery electric vehicles (BEV) is growing, with 69 per cent of European respondents having identified themselves as either potential first movers or as might be willing to consider an EV today,  current market offerings generally fall far short of consumers’ expectations for driving range, charging time, and purchase price.”

“As a result, we estimate only one to two per cent of these consumers actually adopting battery electric vehicles by 2020,” he added.

The survey shows that there is a tipping point in terms of fuel prices influencing consumer adoption of EVs. Sixty-three per cent of the European consumers surveyed say they are “much more likely” to consider an EV if the cost of fuel rises to two euros ($2.84) a litre.

But, at the same time, if fuel efficiency reaches more than three litres per 100 kilometers in ICEs, they would be less willing to purchase an EV.

“For mass adoption, automakers will be challenged to price electric vehicles to meet the expectations of consumers while maximizing their margins,” said Martin Hoelz, Deloitte Germany’s automotive sector leader.

“European consumers are not likely to want to pay a high price premium for EVs. This means that incentives such as tax reductions and exemptions, as well as bonus payments, will continue to be very important to the purchase decision.”

The majority (57 per cent) of respondents who say they may be willing to consider an EV expect to pay the same or less for an EV than they do for a regular car: only about a quarter (24 per cent) among the same group say they would be willing to pay a price premium of more than 1,500 euros.

Moreover, the majority of these consumers (58 per cent) expect to pay less than 15,000 euros net of government incentives. – TradeArabia News Service




Tags: Europe | Survey | Beirut | Electric vehicle | Deloitte |

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