One-third of Aussies want an electric car in next five years
A new report has predicted that electric cars are in for a bumpy ride in Australia.
New research has shown two-thirds of Australians can't ever imagine owning an electric car - mainly elderly drivers.
But on the flip side the survey by Origin Energy found that one-third of Aussies predicted they would own an electric vehicle within the next five years.
At the moment, electric vehicles make up just 0.2 per cent of the new-car market.
The study showed that saving money on fuel bills was the number one reason for wanting an EV, rather than the environment.
Origin's data showed that on average a petrol car driven 10,000km a year would cost its owner about $1350 annually, while an EV can be charged for about $350.
The optimistic outlook on electric vehicle take-up is due to a surge in younger drivers keen to get into zero-emissions motoring. Almost half of drivers aged 18-34 said they would want an electric car. This compares to just 19 per cent of those aged over 55.
However, despite the perceived demand for electric cars there are still a number of critical issues holding them back from becoming mainstream.
Overwhelmingly older Aussies thought that electric cars were too expensive. They were also worried about lack of vehicle charging infrastructure and range anxiety.
Younger drivers are much less worried about range anxiety and the lack of charging infrastructure than older buyers.
Electric cars such as the Tesla Model S, BMW i3 and Jaguar I-Pace are expensive propositions and are out of the price range of most Australians. Cheaper alternatives have started to land, most notably the Tesla Model 3 and Nissan Leaf, but they are still comparatively expensive.
Hyundai has recently launched the fully-electric Kona SUV and an electric and plug-in hybrid version of the Ioniq small car.
The South Korean brand has now partnered with Origin Energy to boost sales of its electric cars.
Owners of the Hyundai Ioniq or Kona electric are eligible for discounts on household solar to help take their EV's off the grid.
Origin's head of retail, Jon Briskin, says: "Origin is committed to transitioning to a smarter energy future. We're pleased to partner with Hyundai to support electric vehicle drivers to take another step towards sustainability with new Origin solar energy offers."
Hyundai has sold more than 300 Ioniqs this year, but those figures also include standard hybrid versions that can't be recharged via the grid.
Recent sales figures show that more fuel efficient vehicles are starting to pique the public's interest.
Sales of regular hybrids have been booming since Toyota launched the hybrid version of its RAV4 SUV earlier this year. Toyota says initial sales of the RAV4 hybrid account for more than 62 per cent of the vehicle's total. Sales of all hybrid SUVs are up about 500 per cent this year.
A benefit of hybrids is that they only cost about $1500 more than petrol-powered versions, compared to electric cars such as the Kona which cost up to $20,000 more than conventional versions.