2015 Harris Poll finds 48% of US car owners would consider hybrid for new car, same as in 2013; plug-in consideration up 2 points
A new Harris Poll of 2,225 US adults (aged 18 and older) has found that 48% of American car owners (or anticipated owners) say they’d consider a traditional hybrid the next time they’re in the market for a new vehicle—a result identical to 2013 findings. Harris recorded lower consideration levels for plug-in vehicles, whether they be plug-in hybrids (29%, up 2 percentage points) or pure electrics (21%, also up 2 points).
An additional two in ten would consider a diesel (19%, up 3 points), while 35% would consider a smaller or gas powered vehicle to save on operating costs (down 3 points).
2013 and 2014 each saw sales for electrified vehicles—hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery-electric vehicles—exceeding the half-million mark, and 2015 is on track for a repeat. As of the end of July, nearly 290,000 vehicles with a battery generating at least some of their momentum have been sold in the US, including nearly 120,000 plug-in models (whether pure electrics or plug-in hybrids). The 2015 sales numbers to date still represent the same 3% of total US vehicle sales seen in 2012, before some major players joined the charge.
Among the other findings of the poll:
Millennials drivers are more likely than their elder counterparts to consider a traditional hybrid, with 57% saying they’d consider one (vs. 49% of Gen Xers, 43% of Baby Boomers and 38% of Matures). This same trend holds true for plug-in hybrids (39% vs. 28%, 22% and 23%) and pure electrics (34% vs. 17%, 14% and 11%), as well as for diesel vehicles (27% vs. 16%, 17% and 9%).
Men are more likely than women to consider an electric vehicle (25% men, 17% women) and more than twice as likely to indicate that they’d consider a diesel (28% men, 11% women).
Distance drivers—those who travel more than 50 miles in an average day—are especially likely to say they’d consider a plug-in hybrid (38%, vs. 28% of those traveling 30 miles or less in a typical day); a pure electric (32% vs. 18%); or a diesel (28% vs. 17%).
Democrats and Independents are more likely than Republicans to consider a traditional hybrid (53% Dem, 52% Ind and 42% Rep); a plug-in hybrid (34%, 32% and 20%); or a pure electric (26%, 25% and 10%).
Top concerns related to pure electric vehicles were price (67%) and range (64%); followed by repair/maintenance costs (58%); reliability (53%); performance/power (50%); and the fact that it’s still new technology (42%).
Price (73% Matures, 71% Baby Boomers, 63% each Gen Xers and Millennials) and range (75%, 75%, 58% and 52%) are especially strong concerns among older Americans.
When considering a new vehicle, drivers’ top concerns are reliability (93%) and purchase cost (81%).