Worse, Americans think self-driving cars are closer to reality than EVs.
Electric vehicle sales are growing in the U.S., but the majority of consumers are still wary or confused about them, a AAA study shows.
Just 4 in 10 survey respondents thought most vehicles sold in the U.S. would be electric by 2029, according to AAA. At the same time, the association found that a larger percentage of Americans think self-driving cars will be more common than electric cars by the same year. Consider the number of EVs about to go on sale versus the number of new driver assistance technologies being talked about by automakers and that public awareness conundrum seems distressing, to say the least.
"These vehicles are a big part of the future of transportation since self-driving cars, when they do arrive, will likely be electric," Greg Brannon, AAA Director of Automotive Engineering and Industry Relations, said in a news release. "The difference, of course, is that electric vehicles are already here and with the advancements in style and range that have been made over the last few years, they have become an even more viable option for many Americans."
The automobile association said Thursday that while they found 40 million Americans that would consider an EV as their next new car, the majority are still concerned about range and confused as to what kind of driving conditions will yield economy for an electric vehicle. Worries about where to charge EVs and higher initial costs have decreased, AAA says, but the study shows more questions about electrics than answers for many Americans – something automakers are going to be increasingly pressured to address as more EVs land on dealer lots across the country.
"Today, more than 200,000 electric cars can be found on roads across the country as almost every manufacturer sells them," AAA's Bannon said. "But, like other new vehicle technologies, Americans don’t have the full story and that could be causing the gap between interest and action."