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High Gas Prices Aren't Enough to Sway Consumers to EVs, Autolist Survey Finds

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【Summary】The survey found that poor charging infrastructure, range, and price are the three main reasons why consumers won’t purchase an electric vehicle.

Original Vineeth Joel Patel    May 28, 2022 6:25 AM PT
High Gas Prices Aren't Enough to Sway Consumers to EVs, Autolist Survey Finds

According to the AAA, the average national gas price is hovering around $4.60. That's incredibly high and a dramatic increase of $1.6 from last year's average. While the high gas prices have a lot of consumers rethinking what kind of car they drive to work and even considering trading in their gas-powered car for an all-electric one. While some people are thinking about transitioning to an EV because of the high gas prices, that's not the case for the majority of consumers. 

Same Issues From 2019

Autolist announced its annual Electric Vehicle Survey that questioned 1,300 consumers from April and May 2022 on all things EVs. Despite the new wave of affordable electric cars, Autolist's survey hasn't changed much since 2019 when it was new. Consumers continue to have the same concerns with electric vehicles, proving that gas prices won't be enough to push consumers toward electric cars. 

In the survey, 48 percent of respondents stated that electric vehicles were too expensive. Another big issue was range, as 44 percent of people said they had concerns about how far an electric car would be able to travel. Lastly, 36 percent of respondents said they were worried about finding a place to charge an EV. These three issues are the main things holding people back from purchasing an electric car. 

"These are the same top three concerns that we saw in 2019 and again in 2021," said Corey Lydstone, founder and CEO of Autolist. "While sales of EVs are slowly improving as more compelling models hit the market, consumers' impressions of electric vehicles aren't improving." 

High Prices Remain A Large Factor

Other areas of concern for respondents included, recharge times, battery life, not knowing enough about EVs, and the environmental impact of batteries. These issues, along with the top three, are making consumers think twice about purchasing an electric car, despite high gas prices and prices for cars. "Even though we're seeing record high prices for new and used gas cars right now, many consumers still don't see EVs as a completely viable alternative yet," said Lydstone. 

Surprisingly, more people that were surveyed for the 2022 poll stated that pricing was a key hurdle compared to the poll that was conducted pre-pandemic – 48 percent versus 42 percent. Pricing may be a large issue now, but the situation won't get much better over the next few years. While one would expect pricing for EVs to decrease as more options come out, that won't be the case for the new future as global demand for raw materials to make batteries continues to surge. To make matters worse, automakers have decided to pass on the high costs to consumers, resulting in even higher prices. 

One way to bring the costs of EVs down is for the government to step in with larger subsidies and incentives. While there has been talk of that happening, nothing official has happened yet and won't since the government seems to be split on EVs. 

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