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Survey shows 81% of drivers believe EVs are ‘too expensive’

Four in five motorists find electric cars too expensive, while most drivers are unaware of electric vehicle grants, delaying the switch to cleaner travel, research by the AA shows.

The new study discovered that 81 per cent of road users believe switching to an electric car would be too expensive to consider switching to cleaner travel, while three-quarters of drivers believe an EV would not go as far on a single charge as a petrol or diesel car.

Over 50 per cent of motorists indicated that they are concerned about an electric car breaking down on a motorway, with a total of 49 per cent stating they feel less confident about driving an electric vehicle than one with an internal combustion engine.

Meanwhile, two-thirds (63 per cent) of respondents said they were unaware of the government Plug-In Car Grant, which subsidises the cost of the new EV by £2,500 with a price below £35,000.

Moreover, 50 per cent of drivers claimed they had never heard of the Electric Vehicle Home charging Scheme, whereby the government contributes up to 75 per cent of the cost of buying and installing a home charging point, worth up to £350 per household.

Overall, the research uncovered that 56 per cent are ultimately unwilling to give up petrol or diesel cars, with fears around the reliability of the charging network, the National Grid, and even EVs themselves.

The AA has teamed with and transport minister Rachel Maclean to implement a behaviour change initiative.

Speaking exclusively to Rachel Maclean, the minister commented: ‘As host of COP26, we want more people to feel empowered to make the switch to an electric vehicle. The release of today’s survey highlights the bumps in the road towards more people choosing an EV, and we know many want support from Government and wider industry to do so.

‘That is why we’re investing up to £2.8 billion to drive the switch, creating a world-leading electric vehicle charging network that’s reliable for all and accelerating us towards a zero-emission future.’

Edmund King, AA president, stated: ‘After more than a century of the combustion engine leading the charge it is not surprising that some drivers are only just catching up with all things electric. We are here to help petrol heads become electric heads. We are delighted to join with and the government to bust some of these myths. 

‘The AA is determined to give power and support to all EV drivers and potential EV drivers. The automotive future is exciting, and we will probably see more change in the next ten years than we have in the last fifty.’

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