One in five new car buyers should go all-electric, What Car? study finds

Around one in five car buyers would be better off buying a pure electric car than a petrol or diesel vehicle, a new study by What Car? has concluded.



The magazine’s motoring experts analysed data from more than 8,400 users of the What Fuel? Calculator.  They looked at users’ daily mileage, driving habits and vehicle requirements, and found that 19% could use a fully electric vehicle as their daily mode of transport without compromising their routine.

It emerged that an electric car would meet the needs of even some drivers covering more than 15,000 miles a year or who live in rural areas better than any other vehicle type, not least because some EVs can now cover more than 200 miles on a single charge.

The study indicated that a petrol model would be the optimum choice for just 5% of new car buyers, while 12% would be best off with a diesel.  However, the best choice for the vast majority – 64% – would be a hybrid vehicle or plug-in hybrid. 

 “There are more than 20 different fully electric vehicles available, with many giving their petrol and diesel counterparts a serious run for their money,” What Car? Editor Steve Huntingford said.  “Yet electric ownership is lagging behind its potential.”

Sales of fully electric vehicles currently account for just 2.2% of the new car market, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders.  What Car?’s experts believe this is due mainly to a ‘knowledge gap’, which is causing motorists to overlook the latest generation of EVs.  For example, some potential owners remain concerned about range, while others fail to take into account the savings to be had from running an electric vehicle.

Steve Huntingford added: “Our previous research highlighted a ‘knowledge gap’ among new car buyers, with car manufacturers not providing enough information on the benefits of owning an EV.  Since then, many manufacturers have updated the information on their websites, but more could still be done.  The more people learn about the benefits of running and owning an electric car, the faster the technology can reach its full potential.”