As more and more Americans choose to go green than ever, there seemed to be the same excitement surrounding fully electric vehicles. Impressively, all-electric car sales increased 58% in 2014. Despite this increase in overall sales, the all-electric segment remains incredibly small. Furthermore, while electric vehicle sales increased, green vehicles (diesel and hybrids) as a whole fell 6.5% in total in 2014. What exactly is keeping sales from falling short? of the predictions?
Any car dealership will tell you that they are not throwing in the towel just yet by increasing EV sales, but perhaps they are taking a long-term approach to their strategies. As the price of gasoline dropped, many consumers chose to buy larger, less efficient models. With dramatic drops in gas prices below $ 3, interest in vehicles with fewer miles per gallon increases. Fortunately for these vehicles, cheap gasoline won’t be around forever.
Lack of familiarity
Researchers from Indiana University and the University of Kansas conducted a survey that asked basic factual questions about plug-in vehicles. One of the most comprehensive surveys of consumer perceptions of electric cars conducted in years was conducted in multiple cities across the US The results say it all: 60% of the time respondents did not answer correctly, And 75% of those wrong answers underestimated the advantageous aspects of these cars. Most respondents were unaware that they require less maintenance than their gasoline-powered counterparts. They even underestimated the fuel economy of having one of these models. The sheer inaccuracy surrounding them has definitely contributed to the small ownership pool.
Lack of communication
The same survey reported that most people were unaware of state and local sales incentives. If every car dealer and legislator increased education on the advantages and incentives available to buyers, sales would likely increase. Tax exemptions and the ability to use carpool lanes on highways affect a consumer’s purchasing decision. Immediate, easy-to-understand purchase price reductions are more attractive to buyers than complicated and delayed benefits.
With little knowledge or experience surrounding these vehicles, it is obviously difficult for someone to develop an interest in them, much less be inclined to buy one. By demonstrating at local shopping malls, sports venues, or large corporations, a car dealer could benefit from changing public attitudes. In fact, one study showed that more than 71% of drivers said they were much more likely to buy an EV model after having had the opportunity to test drive one of the models currently on the market.
Additionally, the National Research Council released a report examining these same barriers to electric vehicle sales. Their report cited hurdles including limited model options, inadequate driving range on a single charge, high prices, a lack of charging infrastructure and the inconvenience of having to install a charging station in their homes.