Confusing Financial Benefits Put People off Buying an Electric Car, Says YouGov

By Tom Pritchard on at

Electric car adoption has come a long way, but all those experts with their facts and knowledge still say that the UK is falling behind. In the past this has been blamed on the lacklustre state of our EV charging infrastructure compared to other places, but a new YouGov poll pins some of the blame on the fact regular people are just confused about the financial benefits of electric cars and their still-petrol-dependant hybrid cousins.

Despite the fact the government would like people to buy electric cars before it bans the sale of new petrol cars in 2040, sales are still pretty slow. YouGov says only 1 per cent of people own a full-electric vehicle, and 2 per cent own some sort of hybrid. It also found that only 41 per cent of car owners would consider buying a hybrid next time they switch vehicles, a number that drops to 19 per cent when fully electric motors are involved.

Apparently YouGov found there are three main barriers to swapping an ICE vehicle for one with a plug. The first is, naturally, the financial side of it, with 46 per cent of respondents admitted they were confused about the financial benefits of owning an electric car. That includes tax incentives and government grants, alongside the benefit of paying for electricity rather than petrol or diesel.

YouGov also found that what incentives people did know about weren't attractive enough to warrant a switch, and 74 per cent say that the actual cost of the cars themselves is standing in the way of them picking one up. It probably doesn't help that plug-in hybrids no longer qualify for a grant, even though EV buyers have been getting more money off their new cars since October. Then again that's a prime opportunity for people to get confused.

While some people have expressed their concerns about the UK's ability to keep up with increased demand for EV charging infrastructure, something needs to be done to get people out buying cars. Or, at the very least, make sure they know what's going on. [YouGov]