A majority of motorists now say they will consider an electric vehicle ‘in the near future’. That’s according to research carried out by the online car supermarket BuyaCar.co.uk, which is tracking the attitude of motorists to electric vehicle adoption.
It’s the first time a majority of car buyers have signalled that their switch to an EV is imminent. Of the 422 motorists asked what type of car they are considering next, 51% said they will consider an EV ‘in the near future’.
Fewer than one in three drivers said that they were not interested in buying an electric car imminently while the remaining 18.7% said that they have not yet started thinking about it.
The findings are also supported by a marked increase in interest in used electric vehicles on sale at BuyaCar.co.uk. So far this year there has been a 40% increase in searches for EVs across the website compared with the same period in 2020, the company claims.
Typically, previous surveys of car buying intentions have revealed a slowly growing acceptance of the idea of going all electric, but this is the first time a majority of motorists have said that they are likely to switch soon.
Says Christofer Lloyd, Editor of BuyaCar.co.uk:
“Clearly the switch to EVs will not happen overnight and relying entirely on sales data can be misleading because today’s sales fail to reflect the growing underlying interest in electric cars.
“But a 40% increase in searches – even from an initially low level – is clear evidence that an EV is now certainly in the mix for a rapidly growing number of people during their initial car-buying research.
“It seems clear that last year’s government announcement of the end for new internal combustion engines has boosted EVs into the mainstream in terms of the initial options considered by our customers.”
Meanwhile, new research from CarGurus shows that the majority of car buyers now conduct most of their buying journey online. This includes doing most of their purchase research and decision making from their desktop or mobile device before ever contacting a dealership.
While the shift to digital was already in motion before COVID-19 struck, the pandemic has accelerated the trend, claims the online retailer. According to the CarGurus 2021 Buyer Insights Report, 63% of car buyers surveyed during the pandemic said they were now open to buying a car online, up from 43% before the pandemic.