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Would You Buy An Electric Vehicle?

  • 4 min read

Consumer data key to developing electric vehicle industry in SA

Electric vehicles are poised to capture 32% of global market share of new car sales by 2030, according to a recent forecast by Deloitte – one of many that predict the exponential growth of electric vehicles worldwide in years to come. However, South Africa unfortunately lags behind this global trend.

This is according to Ben Pullen, CEO at Generation.e who is bringing the creative 3-day Smarter Mobility Africa LIVE summit back to South Africa’s shores on 27 – 29 October 2020 in digital form in light of COVID-19. The company, in partnership with AutoTrader, has released an Electric Vehicle Buyer survey to gain insights into how car buyers perceive electric vehicles.

“Understanding the consumers’ perceptions towards electric vehicles is vital to ascertain what the local market can expect over the next couple of years. and in order to do this, we are working with AutoTrader to tap into the most active car buyers in the country,” explains Pullen.

The EV Car Buyer Survey will compliment the recent report published by the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) and the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (NAAMSA). “As I understand, the aim of this report was to conduct research into how the whole electric vehicle industry, including consumer vehicles, busses, vans and hydrogen fueled-cells, battery production, mining and the full value chain can be bolstered in the country, and what policies can be applied to assist this in order to optimise the market,” adds Pullen.

“Since the Department of Transport released its Green Transport Strategy in 2018, there has been a groundswell of local research that has been conducted from a policy, business and Government point of view,” points out Pullen. “However, it is vital that we understand what car buyers and consumers think of electric vehicles in order to outline what can be done to make the adoption more attractive for South African’s to benefit from lower costs, higher performance, and of course cleaner air for our health and lower carbon emissions in line with international goals.”

“As such, our aim is to close the loop in this research from a consumer perspective in order to drive decision-making strategies, especially now that even more electric vehicles are being launched in the country” says Pullen.

The survey asks questions such as whether consumers have either bought an electric vehicle or plan to, their perceived advantages and disadvantages when it comes to buying and owning an electric vehicle as well as what could be done to encourage them to make the switch.

“As South Africa’s leading motoring marketplace, we reach the largest and most serious audience of ‘in-market car shoppers’ with this survey.  One gets the sense that the public have strong opinions and perceptions on Electric Vehicles and South Africa’s readiness to support EV car owners. This survey seeks to place real data behind South Africa’s actual appetite towards what will undoubtedly be the future,” says George Mienie, AutoTrader CEO. “That, combined with our unique consumer behaviour data, will provide interesting insights that the local automotive industry can use in future strategies on meeting consumer needs in the world of EVs”.

The results of the survey will be shared and presented in partnership with AutoTrader at the Smarter Mobility Africa 2020 summit. The event will see over 50 speakers discuss smarter mobility solutions in South Africa such as walking, cycling, shared transport, public transport and electric vehicles. “We will unpack the smarter mobility landscape in Africa, including the challenges and opportunities brought about by COVID-19 and the progress of governments’ Green Economy and Smarter Mobility Strategies,” adds Pullen.

Utilising the latest virtual conferencing tools Smarter Mobility Africa LIVE brings together mobility thought leaders from business and government, to consolidate efforts for driving the transition to electric and smarter mobility. The virtual summit will shine a light on currently available and future mobility solutions. Highly effective networking and interaction are applied to ensure that the most relevant stakeholders are connecting. Those that wish to attend can buy tickets here.