EV Acceptance Won't Come Easy, But Growing Numbers Are Interested - Report
November 15, 2010
by John O'Dell
We've never tried to suggest that electric-drive vehicles will sweep over the market like a wind-driven grass fire.
Acceptance will come, but slowly as more and more people are exposed to EVs, plug-in hybrids and someday, maybe, fuel-cell electric vehicles.
In addition to range anxiety - the potential buyer's concern about how far an EV can go on a single charge - obstacles to widespread and rapid adoption of electric-drive cars and trucks include cost and uncertainty about reliability of what many see as a brand new technology.
Analysts at Pike Research say a new survey they've conducted supports that view but also shows that enough people are interested to make a good case for success.
"The early adapter market should easily meet the industry's expectations for the first few years of electric vehicle sales," said Pike analyst Dave Hurst.
It's the market after the early adapters have ben satisfied that's the question mark.
The Colorado-based new energy research firm conducted the Web-based survey over the summer and collected responses nationwide responses from 1,042 adult consumers.
Interestingly, while the survey was conducted as both Nissan and General Motors were ramping up media campaigns to promote the upcoming Nissan Leaf battery-electric hatchback and the Chevrolet Volt range-extended plug-in sedan, respondents selected Ford and Honda as the two automakers whose EVs they'd be most likely to consider.
Ford won't introduce a consumer EV until the battery-electric 2012 Focus debuts, and Honda until late last month had been openly hostile to the idea of all-electric vehicles, saying it preferred dual powertrain hybrids instead. The company's tune is changing, though, and a Honda EV concept, and perhaps a plug-in hybrid concept as well, will be shown at the Los Angeles Auto Show this week.
Full article at link.