This paper examines consumer stated intent to purchase plug-in electric vehicles and assesses the factors that increase or decrease interest. We surveyed adult drivers in large US cities in early fall 2011, before vehicle manufacturers and dealers began marketing campaigns. The survey responses thus document early impressions of this transport technology. We find that, given current battery technology and public perceptions, overall stated intent to purchase or lease electric vehicles is low. Interest in plug-in hybrid technology is somewhat greater than interest in all-electric technology. Consumers who express early interest in adopting electric vehicles are typically highly educated, previous owners of conventional hybrids, environmentally sensitive, and concerned about dependence on foreign oil. Enhanced fuel economy, the primary tangible advantage of plug-in technology, is recognized as favorable by respondents but fails to exert a strong influence on purchasing intentions. Interest in plug-in electric vehicles is shaped primarily by consumers’ perceptions of electric vehicle disadvantages.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/bradleywlane/13/