Interest in hybrid vehicles still far exceeds that of full-battery electric vehicles

As global automakers continue to invest in electrified vehicle (EV) production, internal combustion engine (ICE) powertrains dominate future US intentions, with 69% of US consumers looking to keep the technology for their next vehicle.

Despite growing interest in sustainability globally, more than half (53%) of US consumers are unwilling to pay more than $500 for alternative engine solutions.

Virtual sales continue to show promise for their convenience and ease of use; however, 75% of US consumers would prefer an in-person experience for their next vehicle purchase.

Shared mobility services like ridesharing and carpooling have been slow to return to pre-pandemic levels; 76% of Americans prefer their personal vehicle to other modes of transportation.

why it matters

As the auto sector focuses on the way forward and a return to its pre-pandemic pace of growth, consumer values ​​remain aligned around familiarity and affordability. For 12 years, Deloitte has explored automotive consumer trends that impact the rapidly changing global mobility ecosystem. This year’s report, 2022 Global Automotive Consumer Study, explores a variety of issues impacting the global automotive sector, including the development of advanced technologies, sustainability, cost expectations for new vehicles, virtual shopping experiences and mobility services. The report is based on a survey of over 26,000 consumers from 25 countries between September and October 2021.

Mapping the future of electric vehicles

As global automakers look to deliver on their promises of an electrified future, consumer interest in adopting more sustainable powertrains is driven by lower fuel costs, climate concerns and better driving experiences. . However, the limitations of electric vehicles continue to attract many drivers to familiar internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. At the same time, consumers’ willingness to pay for advanced technologies remains limited.

Despite growing interest in sustainability, a majority of consumers are still unwilling to pay more than US$500 for advanced technologies, including alternative powertrains, including in the US at 53%. Additionally, consumers are unwilling to pay for other advanced features, including autonomous driving, improved safety and connectivity.

As a result, ICE vehicles continue to dominate future vehicle purchase intentions in the United States (69%). Among alternative powertrains, consumer interest in battery electric vehicles (BEVs) is highest in the Republic of Korea (23%), China (17%) and Germany (15%), while Japanese consumers showed the highest preference for hybrid electric vehicles (HEV/PHEV) (48%) followed by the Republic of Korea (35%).

However, growing concerns about climate change and reduced emissions are consistently among the top two motivating factors for EV adoption among global consumers in the United States, Germany, Japan, Republic of Korea, in India and Southeast Asia.

The majority of electric vehicle buyers expect to charge their vehicle at home, particularly in Japan (76%), India (76%), the United States (75%) and Germany (70%). Public charging demand is highest in the Republic of Korea (38%) and Southeast Asia (29%).

Of those planning to charge their vehicle at home, two-thirds (66%) of Americans will take advantage of traditional electric grids. Meanwhile, consumers in India, China and Southeast Asia plan to use both the regular power grid and renewable energy.

Range is the main concern about electric vehicles among consumers in Germany (24%), China (22%) and the United States (20%), while the lack of public charging infrastructure is a concern major in Asia (Southeast Asia at 28%, Republic of Korea at 26%, India at 23% and Japan at 19%).

US consumers expect fully charged electric vehicles to travel more than 500 miles, while those in China, Japan and India are content with a range of around 250 miles.

The Road to Vehicle Purchasing

Consumers buying new vehicles prefer traditional in-person experiences over virtual platforms. However, virtual retail is gaining momentum for its convenience, speed and ease of use.

COVID-19 had a significant impact on consumers’ car buying decisions in India and Southeast Asia (64% and 63%, respectively). Conversely, more than two-thirds of US consumers (69%) say the pandemic has not affected their vehicle purchase plans.

Consumers in India (45%) and Southeast Asia (31%) cited an increased desire to purchase a vehicle to avoid public transport; only 14% of American drivers said the same.

For consumers around the world, in-person shopping is the preferred channel for acquiring a vehicle, including three-quarters (75%) of US consumers. In-person experiences are even more prioritized in Southeast Asia (80%) and Germany (78%).

However, when buying virtually, consumers in most countries would prefer to buy directly from an authorized retailer, including the United States (48%). Japanese consumers, on the other hand, would prefer to buy directly from the OEM (49%).

Virtual vehicle sales are most often driven by convenience in the Republic of Korea (68%), Japan (41%), Germany (40%) and the United States (39%). Ease of use is highest for consumers in China (33%), along with India (27%) and the United States (25%).

Personal mobility remains king

Shared mobility offers, including vehicle subscriptions and ride-sharing services, face a slow return to pre-pandemic levels as personal vehicle ownership retains its position as the most desirable mode of transportation .

More than three-quarters of Americans (76%) say their personal vehicle is their primary mode of transportation. However, public transport represents a significant share of consumers in the Republic of Korea (31%) and Japan (27%).

Vehicle subscription services are more popular in global markets, but continue to gain interest in the United States. About a third of US consumers are interested in vehicle subscription services to access different car models, vehicle brands and used vehicles (32% each).

Convenience, flexibility of exchanging vehicles, and vehicle availability are the primary drivers for engaging a vehicle subscription service in the United States.

About Mohammed B. Hale

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