‘One in four UK consumers plan to buy an electric car in next five years’

New research by the UK’s independent energy regulator Ofgem has found that almost one in four (24%) consumers plan to buy an electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid in the next five years.

Ipsos MORI carried out the research on behalf of Ofgem interviewing 4,608 respondents between June and September 2020. Interviews were carried out with consumers across England, Scotland and Wales.

Ofgem’s research showed that:

  • Those who own electric vehicles are more open to embracing changes in how they use their energy.
  • Electric vehicle owners are three times more likely to say they are on a time of use tariff than non-owners.
  • Over half (60%) would consider smart charging of their vehicle to avoid times when electricity is most expensive.

A time-of-use tariff charges consumers a lower rate when demand is low, encouraging them to use energy at off-peak times.

Although many consumers intend on changing their car to an electric one, over a third (38%) said they were unlikely to get an electric vehicle in the next five years. This is due to perceived barriers like the price being too high (59%), a short battery life and/or short range (38%) and worries about having nowhere to charge their electric vehicle close to home (36%).

Three in four (74%) consumers identified electricity generation and transport, such as fossil fuel power stations and exhaust emissions, as activities that play a big part in contributing to climate change.

But the research shows that fewer consumers (60%) identified domestic heating, like gas boilers, as playing a big part in contributing to climate change, although one in seven (14%) intend to install low carbon heating such as heat pumps.

The Climate Change Committee, an independent body that is preparing the UK for climate change, anticipates around 18 million battery and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles will be on the road by the ban on the sale of new internal combustion vehicles being introduced in 2030.



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