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UK Gov survey finds 5% of people considering buying an EV

A recent UK government survey of public attitudes to electric vehicles found only 5% of respondents said that they were thinking about buying an electric car or van; 56% said that they had not thought about buying one; and 14% saying that they had thought about buying one and decided not to.

The study was carried out in February 2014, very shortly after the launch of the Government-industry “Go Ultra Low” Communications campaign which was designed to boost EV uptake.

Other findings of the survey include:

  • 0.3% of respondents already owned an electric car or van.

  • When only considering those with a full driving licence, the percentage of respondents who had not really thought about buying an electric car or van rose to 69%. In addition, 18% of respondents had thought about buying one but decided not to, with a further 6% saying that they were thinking about buying one

  • Drivers reported that the most important things they considered when buying a car or van were, cost (85%), reliability (78%), safety (66%) and comfort (53%).

  • Drivers reported that the most important factors putting them off buying an electric car or van were recharging (40%), and the distance travelled on a battery (39%) followed by cost (33%) and lack of knowledge (16%).

  • Drivers reported that the most important factors that would encourage them to buy an electric car were cost (37%) followed by “nothing” (23%). Other factors included battery (distance travelled on charge) (20%), environmentally friendly (17%) and convenience of recharging (16%).

The ONS Opinions and Lifestyle (Omnibus) Survey is a random probability survey of adults aged 16 and over living in private households in Great Britain. Adults are interviewed face to face in their homes. The response rate of 53% for the February 2014 survey, resulted in a sample size of 962.

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