CarTrade Tech's Mobility Outlook - the country's first multi-dimensional, multi-modal platform dedicated to the mobility industry released the Indian Automotive Consumer Canvas (IACC) study today assessing customers' awareness and perception towards electric mobility in India. The report was released during the second edition of Mobility Outlook's Electric Two-Wheeler (e2W) Summit.
The survey targeted age groups between 18 - 56 years and is based on a sample size of 68,029 respondents entailing 2W, 4W owners or intenders, across Tiers 1, 2 & 3 cities.
Favourable government policies and increasing consumer consciousness about the environment, coupled with spiralling fuel prices, have resulted in a steady growth of interest in electric vehicles in India. Moreover, EV manufacturers have pushed the envelope by introducing improved and exciting models catapulting both demand and confidence.
Penchant for Purchase
COVID-19 has played a major role in influencing buying decisions previously. With growing consciousness, a whopping 83 % 2W respondents and 69 % 4W respondents are keen to adopt EVs as their primary vehicle. 10% of the 2W respondents & 6% of 4W respondents have indicated a willingness to purchase an electric car as their next vehicle. In terms of satisfying consumer needs, 62 % of 2W respondents and 55 % of 4W respondents think EVs can replace regular vehicles. The 'responsible for the environment' mindset coupled with a conviction for EV usage has resulted in a high potential among 33 % of 2W respondents and 32 % of 4W respondents to buy an EV within the next one year.
Over three-quarters (77 %) of 2W respondents and 71% of 4W respondents implied an increased awareness of the economics of EV ownership, while nearly 58 % of 2W respondents and 42 % of 4W respondents are willing to stretch their budget by INR 100,000 over petrol or diesel vehicles to make an EV purchase. Interestingly, with skyrocketing fuel prices posing as a propeller, over 20% of 4W respondents and 8% of 2W respondents said they are willing to spend upwards of INR 250,000 over ICE models to purchase an electric vehicle.
Key determinants and deterrents
A healthy 61 % of 2W respondents and 57% of 4W respondents said they would prefer owning electric vehicles because of lower running & maintenance costs. One of the key questions the survey asked was what customers felt were the main disadvantages of EVs. Interestingly, among 2W respondents, 16% opted for safety concerns, while 19% said limited charging infrastructure was a major disadvantage. 29 % of 2W respondents and 26 % of 4W respondents consider higher purchase price of an EV as the biggest disadvantage. Among 4W respondents, 21 % felt limited charging infrastructure and 16% felt long recharging time were the other major barriers to EV adoption.
The next couple of years would likely be a defining period for the electric mobility segment given the government support to the sector under FAME - II.
However, manufacturers, OEMs and distributors will have to focus on efforts to break mental barriers among consumers as the report also reflects anxiety pertaining to safety and health of the vehicles. Attributing looming concerns over EV related fire accidents across the country, 45% of 2W respondents and 46% of 4W respondents said they read articles on EVs catching fire, making media mentions the single biggest reason triggering fear and resistance. Having said that, a positive 50 % of 2W respondents and 43 % of 4W respondents think EVs are safe.
The Top Choices
In terms of types of EVs, 6-9 % preferred Hybrid electric cars, 10 % preferred electric cars among 4W respondents while among 2W respondents, 9 % opted for Hybrid Electric (HEV) and10 % opted for Battery Electric (BEV). 34 % of the respondents expect a 400 km range on a full charge.
While 36 % of 2W respondents and 39 % of 4W respondents among the time-weary generation prefer 1 hour as the most appropriate charging duration, the others have expressed a reasonable demand of 2-4 hours for achieving a full charge in an electric vehicle. Swappable batteries as a mode of charging received less preference among respondents, with 42% of 2W respondents and 40% of 4W respondents preferring home charging for EVs.
Commenting on the burgeoning EV industry in India, Mr. Banwari Lal Sharma, CEO - Consumer Business, CarTrade Tech Limited said, "The survey indicates a positive sentiment towards EV becoming the future of the automotive industry across the country. Today, Indians are not just consumers but 'purposeful' users as well and the report is indicative of their desire to make a difference in their own little ways. EVs also seem to be the primary choice of vehicle for 83% 2W respondents and 69% 4W respondents, hereby showing tailwinds for the sector. With the underlying need for personal mobility and financial decisiveness augured during the pandemic, we are extremely hopeful of the EV industry in India."
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