Americans are not sold on electric vehicles

Only 19% of citizens are seriously considering replacing their current car with an electric one.

Americans are not convinced that their next car will be an electric vehicle. The main reasons for this decision are the high costs and the difficulty when it comes to charging these vehicles. However, four out of ten Americans say they are willing to consider such a switch but are undecided. This hesitancy is partly due to the 100+ year relationship Americans have had with gasoline-powered cars. This was found by a survey conducted by AP-NORC, the Center for Public Affairs Research and the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago, which also shows that the plans for the Biden Administration to rapidly increase the sale of electric vehicles may be met with clear consumer resistance. Only 8% of American adults claim to own an electric car and another 8% say they own a plug-in hybrid vehicle.

Even with credits and discounts of up to $7,500 for the purchase of an electric car, it seems difficult to convince the average citizen to decide to give up gasoline vehicles altogether.

Joe Biden’s administration and the Environmental Protection Agency have launched a proposal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, aiming for half of the cars sold in the country to be electric by 2030, and two-thirds of the total by 2032. Car companies are in a tight race to make better and cheaper cars with longer-lasting batteries. However, only 19% of Americans say they are "very likely" or "extremely" likely to buy an electric vehicle the next time they change cars.

Price is always important. In the U.S., an electric vehicle costs on average $58,000, while the average car bought by Americans is around $46,000. The $7,500 worth of credits and discounts offered by the government do not seem enough to tempt many people. In addition, three-quarters of the respondents mention the difficulty of charging the battery as the main reason for not opting for an electric vehicle.

Republican opposition

The Republican Party opposes President Biden's policies because it believes they hurt American workers and manufacturers and benefit China. Republicans cite as an example what is happening with Ford Motor Company, which will purchase electric batteries from Chinese companies such as CATL and eliminate up to 8,000 jobs. However, California, one of the great Democratic strongholds, passed a ban on the sale of new gas-powered cars from 2035 onwards, a measure that Governor Gavin Newsom called "bold":

The climate crisis is solvable if we focus on the big, bold steps needed to stem the tide of carbon pollution.

Another reason many buyers are reluctant to switch to electric vehicles is that one in six households in the United States has fallen behind on their electric bills, so it seems unlikely that Americans will want to incur more costs.