As consumers to continue to hear about energy-efficient vehicles, many have indicated their interest in plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). The most recent survey from Pike Research indicates a significant rise in the number of consumers, now at nearly 50%, who are “extremely or very interested in purchasing a PHEV with a 40-mile range on a single charge.”
Marketers will need to educate consumers on this new technology and key issues that must be addressed include:
- Fuel efficiency is a key factor for over 8 in 10 consumers when they purchase their next vehicle.
- A significant majority of consumers will pay, on average, a 12% premium to purchase a PHEV.
- Charging stations at work, home and in public locations will be necessary to make the technology succeed.
- Nearly 8 in 10 consumers accept that they will need a fast-charging outlet at home but the issue of costs looms large and may be a barrier to conversion.
Marketing for this new technology should increase significantly in 2010 which is when the first PHEVs may be introduced to U.S. consumers though the study points out that reaching total unit sales of 600,000 may take until 2015.[Source: Pike Research release, 9.8.09]