AM Online

EV purchase price still biggest barrier for buyers, says Direct Line

The purchase price for electric vehicles is still the biggest barrier to adoption for car buyers in the UK, according to new research from Direct Line.

Of the 2,000 UK adults polled, 32% said the upfront cost is their biggest concern, with another 32% believing EVs are more expensive to run than petrol cars.

However, Direct Line’s own analysis estimates that the lifetime cost of owning an EV is at least £107 a year less than a petrol vehicle.

This was based on Direct Line’s figures looking at the average cost of an EV being £3,752 a year over the course of its life, compared to £3,858 for a petrol car with the higher purchase cost for EVs offset by lower running costs, as well as tax and maintenance being cheaper.

Other than cost, the biggest concerns about electric vehicles are lack of access to charging points away from home (20%) and access to charging points at home (16%).

However, nearly a third of motorists (31%) would be happy for an electric vehicle public charging point to be installed outside their home.

Attitudes to the positioning of electric chargers may have to change in many parts of the country, reveals analysis of the provision of electric vehicle chargers by parliamentary constituencies by the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS), utilising data provided by

The constituencies across the country with the fewest public charging facilities are Birmingham Perry Barr and the Rhondda, which both have none at all.

At the other end of the scale, Glasgow Central and Leeds Central have the greatest proportion of public charging points per 100 electric vehicles, boasting 139 and 127 respectively, more than the number of electric cars on the roads. Liverpool Riverside and Coventry North East also have more chargers than vehicles.

Nearly half of car buyers ready to make the switch

Around half (49%) of those surveyed said they would be happy to own an EV now or in the future, despite concerns over cost and infrastructure.

For the under-35s the number who are keen to go electric now or in the future rises to 64%, with 28% happy to own one now.

Ian Exworth, Direct Line director of emerging and specialist markets, said: “Electric cars are rapidly becoming an accepted part of the driving landscape as demonstrated by the number of electric vehicles we now see on the roads.

“Millions are open to owning an EV, which is brilliant, but many are still understandably concerned about factors such as cost and infrastructure availability.

“It is fascinating however, that it is the younger drivers who are leading the way with nearly two out of three of them keen to own electric cars. Nearly half of all those who say they want to own an electric car now are under-35 which is a real insight into how the roads of the not too distant future will look.”

The best and worst constituencies for electric charging facilities per 100 EVs

The latest AM industry special issue

The complexity of running a modern dealership can be misunderstood easily by people looking in on our industry.

Any general manager has so many plates to spin, and they must foster a talented team that they can rely on to not just do the basics well, but to sprinkle some magic on top that customers can notice.

If the marketplace in 2023 is steadily returning to relative normality, this normality now includes the drive to find customers for an increasing supply of electric vehicles, and the need to source used cars from all channels and market them carefully. And of course there are the desires to delight consumers with an omnichannel experience and to hold on to decent margins after a couple of years of strong profitability.

The expectations of both the customer and the business’s stakeholder must be achieved to the optimum level.

In this special digital publication, industry experts, prominent suppliers and franchised dealers share their insights on the major aspects required in running a modern dealership well.

Read now

If you are not a registered user your comment will go to AM for approval before publishing. To avoid this requirement please register or login.

Login to comment


No comments have been made yet.