If EVs are the future of the automotive industry and countless legacy automakers are making the pledge to electrify their fleet, what’s stopping consumers from buying in? According to a recent survey by KPMG, Canadian drivers do, in fact, want EVs; they just have charging anxiety.
The survey revealed that, despite growing interest in the EV segment, many Canadians still have concerns regarding EV range, reliability, incentives and, more than anything, recharging times and available charging infrastructure. Moreover, 90 per cent of participants said they need to “do a lot more research” to find the EV that is right for them.
“We found that Canadians are ready to make the switch to electric, emission-free vehicles but they want to see improvements in infrastructure and trust battery technology in our climate before they fully commit,” says Peter Hatges, Partner and National Sector Leader, Automotive, KPMG in Canada. “The mustang has left the barn. There is no turning back from the electrification of the automobile industry. As EV production revs up, the established automakers will need to pay close attention to consumer wants and needs. Our poll findings reveal brand loyalty isn’t as strong as automakers might think.”
Now, let’s get into some specifics. The survey uncovered the following insights:
– 71 per cent of Canadians would consider making the switch to an electric vehicle the next time they’re in the market
– 49 per cent are more like to purchase an EV today compared to a year ago
– Almost 80 per cent of them say they won’t even consider an EV that doesn’t have a driving range of at least 400 kilometres
– 64 per cent believe EVs aren’t reliable in Canada’s cold harsh winters.
– Half (51 per cent) of the survey participants expect public charging stations to work quickly, saying they aren’t willing to wait more than 20 minutes, and one in five say they wouldn’t wait any longer than five minutes for their EV to charge at a charging station
Another report from KPMG revealed which automakers have secured the top spot in the hearts of Canadian EV buyers. Interestingly, Tesla and Toyota were tied and closely followed by Honda; both Japanese automakers don’t currently offer BEVs for our market.