Poll Finds 40% of Brits Will Consider Buying an Electric Vehicle in the Next 5 Years; 72% Have Never Seen a Public Charger


Euro-Spec 2013 Nissan LEAF is Built in UK

Euro-Spec 2013 Nissan LEAF is Built in UK

Will “consider” buying is certainly not the same as actually purchasing, but at least there are signs that Britain is getting more on board to the idea of of possibly owning an electric vehicle in the near future.

Renault Zoe is Not Built in UK, But It's Available to Buy There

Renault Zoe is Not Built in UK, But It’s Available to Buy There

A poll conducted by Censuswide shows that over 40% of Britain’s drivers would consider buying an electric vehicle within the next 5 years if certain limitations to EV can be overcome.
Those limitations or barriers are strictly related to cost and public infrastructure, both of which should be a non-issue in 5 years’ time.
Cost isn’t the main issue, according to the poll.  Rather, it’s the lack of a widespread public charging infrastructure that’s holding buyers back.

A full 62% of respondents stated that the lack of charging stations make electric vehicles seem impractical and 72% claim to have never seen a public charger.

The UK is indeed home to some 3,000 public charge points, but half of those surveyed say they have no clue where those chargers are.

This lack of knowledge is alarming and it says to us that educating the general public should still be the number one priority.

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4 Comments on "Poll Finds 40% of Brits Will Consider Buying an Electric Vehicle in the Next 5 Years; 72% Have Never Seen a Public Charger"

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Unless I’m specifically looking for them, I rarely see public chargers either. There is one in a nearby community center that has signs for EV charging, but that’s the only one I’ve ever seen.

All the other charging spots I’ve seen requires some searching. Many times they’re tucked in the back parking lot of side lot of a building. Blink’s chargers, for example, use very understated black and white colors, meaning they don’t stand out from the rest of the scenery.

Given that I frequently talk to people who don’t even know there are electrically-powered vehicles (!), it doesn’t surprise me those same people have no idea what an EV charging station even looks like.

Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield

I’d argue that not seeing and not knowing where charging stations are are two different things.

Here in the UK, there’s been a really big push recently from some companies, including energy supplier Ecotricity on its “electric highway”.

I’m not sure how many people were surveyed, or how survey participants were picked, but most major cities now have plenty of charging stations. Without knowing more about how the survey’s methodology, it’s difficult to draw solid conclusions.

As with regard to charging stations? Here in the U.K, 240V AC is standard in every home, so it’s a case of participants not knowing what a charging station looks like — or that they can plug in and charge at 3 kW from any household socket.

There is a ChargeMaster (www.chargemasterplc.com) EVSE in the Coaches/Motothome parking area of the National Motor Museum in Beaulieu buried in the hedgerow behind the dumpster if someone needs one. Its only 3kW though 🙁

The reality is that the barriers are cost and range and much less about public charging stations. It seems the Ford article from last week made that clear, where full EV owners were less likely to charge at public charging stations than plug-in hybrid owners. EV owners were not feeling the ‘need’ to top off every time there was a plug available either. Simply because EV owners buy the EV based on knowing their commuter/daily route, or have a back up ICE/hybrid vehicle for long road trips. Not depending on finding a gas/charging station like in the old days of ICE. And we already know that over 80% charge at home today. So as EVs obtain longer range, there will be even less a need for public charging, as even now most EV owners can go a couple days or more without charging at home. Then there is the issue that public charging can cost 2 to 3 times as much as charging at home. It’s as of the same ICE/gas station mentality is behind the marketing of charging stations, when the ‘gas station’ is now in the owners garage where they park the car each day. The way I… Read more »