Famous Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco at night / Getty Images

When it comes to EV adoption, could incentives and education be the missing link? A recent survey conducted by electric vehicle advocacy group Veloz set out to take the temperature of Californians as they consider their next vehicle purchase.

The findings revealed that nearly half of Californians “are likely to choose an EV the next time they’re in the market for a vehicle.” However, the survey also revealed “lots of room for improvement” as state policymakers look to further encourage and streamline that transition.

As it stands, California has just nudged past 15 per cent of EV sales among new vehicles, and the state is working towards its promise to ban gas-powered vehicles by 2035. Specifically, the survey revealed that incentives and education are two aspects of the EV movement that need to be further developed to win the most buyers.

According to the survey, seven in ten Californians support the idea of replacing the current EV rebate incentives with a point-of-sale voucher, “in the form of a coupon that buyers could take to the dealership, giving them an instant discount.” These findings align with other surveys which have revealed consumer preference for incentives offered as purchase vouchers, rather than more abstract tax credits.

The Veloz survey also found that “information goes a long way toward selling potential EV adopters on EVs as a new vehicle type.” This education includes, but is not limited to, how quickly an EV can charge, and the potential cost savings of charging and EV maintenance versus a continued reliance on gas-powered cars.

In light of these findings, automakers like General Motors (GM) appear to be on the right track by offering educational resources like EV Live, which allows consumers to virtually connect with experts who can help explain EVs, home charging, battery technology, and more.

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