In a study, conducted by the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs [SPEA], nearly 2,500 drivers across the country were interviewed regarding their attitude toward electrified vehicles, including parallel hybrid electric vehicles, pure electric vehicles, and series hybrid electric vehicles.
The SPEA study, conducted in the Fall of 2011 and completed just this week, reveals that “although many engineers, environmentalists and politicians are enthusiastic about electric vehicle technology… new car buyers, based on early impressions, have little interest in purchasing plug-in vehicles.” – John D. Graham, SPEA Dean.
The drivers were asked to rate their interest in EVs on a ten-point scale, and the average was dismal, the highest only 3.72 in San Francisco, CA, the lowest 2.36 in Nashville, TN. “The perceived drawbacks of electric vehicles outweigh the advantages for most consumers,” mentions the study. On the other hand, there seemed to be much more interest in hybrid vehicles.
Even though the study is a year old, it still gives us some pause to consider what the industry needs to do in order to raise awareness, increase electric vehicle range, and decrease charging times. Until then, the study results point to perhaps a better market for plug-in hybrids like the Chevy Volt, Toyota Prius Plug-In, and the Ford C-Max Energi. It’s a good start anyways.