U.S. consumers’ interest in electric vehicles has lost some charge over the past year according to fresh data that spells out the top reservations Americans have about giving up their gas-powered autos.
Car insurance app company Jerry’s 2024 State of the American Driver report released this week found that 41% of respondents said they were interested in buying or leasing an EV as their next vehicle, down from 49% from a year earlier.
The steepest decline was among the youngest drivers, Gen Z, whose interest plummeted from 61% to 41%. Baby boomers’ interest in buying an EV was the lowest at 31%. As a whole, 23% of those surveyed said they plan to purchase their first EV within the next three years, down from 25% a year ago.
In the poll of more than 1,200 American drivers, more than half (54%) of car owners who said they were not interested in buying an EV said they would not consider one even if charging the vehicle was as quick and convenient as filling a car with gas. Forty-four percent of those surveyed said they simply prefer a gas-powered car.
When asked to choose between two hypothetical identical vehicles with the same price tag – a hybrid that does not require charging and an EV that does – 83% chose the hybrid. The most frequently cited reason (66%) was the option to use gas, followed by limited EV driving range (57%) and the inconvenience of charging EVs (52%).
Interest in EVs has grown significantly in recent years, with registrations in the U.S. increasing by nearly 547% since 2017. Still, in 2022, EVs made up fewer than 1% of all vehicle registrations in the nation.
Major automakers have begun to acknowledge the concerns over EV demand weakness, as they navigate losses and pull back on investments in the technology.