Without selling a single electric car, mind you.
Cargurus discovered that 52 percent of 1,097 car owners in the US consider buying an electric car in the next ten years. To these folks, it made a simple question: which brand of electric vehicles are you likely to consider? Predictably, Tesla led the pack, with 57 percent of the respondents mentioning it. With 52 percent of answers, the second place will surprise you: it was Toyota, a car company with no EVs for sale in the US.
If you thought numbers do not add up, that’s because car owners could select more than one brand. The percentages presented in the image above show how many of these customers selected each brand presented to them. The five percent difference shows Toyota may have a bright future selling EVs – even if it was pushed to do that by legislation. The company will reveal the first vehicle from its Beyond Zero initiative on April 19.
Cargurus showed more signs that a wider variety of competitors might dilute Tesla’s advantage when it comes to brand awareness. Of all people interviewed who said they could buy an electric car in the next ten years, 78 percent are open to buying from more than one brand.
There is more good news for EV advocates. If you sum up the 52 percent that will definitely consider an EV with the 32 percent that would give it a thought in the next ten years, the positive outcome reaches about 84 percent of all buyers. Only about 17 percent refuse to do that. Cargurus did not disclose the exact numbers in the survey, but we would guess they were something like 83.5 and 16.5, reaching the perfect 100 percent you’d expect.
When it comes to the next five years, the number of people that would definitely include an EV in their options drops to 30 percent. However, that is still good news. In the 2018 survey, only 15 percent of the respondents considered buying an electric vehicle. An equal share of car buyers would accept to think about one and would never do that in that timespan: 35 percent for each side. The positive answers still add up to 65 percent.
As expected, 67 percent of the buyers would prefer to buy an SUV or a crossover – a body style that is not exactly friends with aerodynamics. Since car owners could select more than one option, 61 percent also considered having a sedan. Electric pickup trucks would get the attention of only 20 percent of the people interviewed.
The Tesla Cybertruck would be the preferred model for 31 percent of the respondents and 40 percent of those who plan to own an EV in the next ten years. Again, Tesla is not in a comfortable spot: 28 percent of respondents and 32 percent of the group willing to get an electric car in ten years would prefer to get a Ford F-150 EV. The GMC Hummer EV accounts for only 16 percent of the answers.
Finally, the survey points to the reasons why people are still afraid to buy an electric car. Of all the car owners, 65 percent are worried about where to charge their cars. Not much behind that concern, 62 percent want to be sure they can easily buy parts and battery pack replacements.
That worry is clear when Cargurus asked if these customers would buy new or used electric cars: 73 percent of the people considering an EV in the next ten years would go for brand-new vehicles, which shows they prefer that their cars have warranty coverages.