Electric Car Demand Soars As More Drivers Switch to “Cheaper” Option Amid Cost of Living Crisis

Australia is witnessing a remarkable surge in the adoption of electrified vehicles, driven by soaring consumer demand, experts say.

New research by Finder shows 1 in 4 Aussies (about 5 million) is gearing up to invest in a car over the next 12 months. About 13% are aiming to buy brand new cars, while a slightly lower 12% have their sights set on pre-owned vehicles.

Experts say there is a growing preference for electrified vehicles among car buyers. Approximately 39% of those planning to buy a car within the next year have shown interest in electric or hybrid vehicles. This surge in interest could potentially see an additional 2 million electric or hybrid vehicles on Australian roads in the coming year.

An estimated 2 in 5 cars purchased in 2024 will be hybrid or electric, new research shows. Credit: Grzegorz Czapski / Shutterstock.com
An estimated 2 in 5 cars purchased in 2024 will be hybrid or electric, new research shows. Credit: Grzegorz Czapski / Shutterstock.com

Finder’s Green Report 2023 adds an intriguing financial dimension to the shift towards electrified vehicles. The report estimates an annual savings of $1,120 for individuals who make the transition to electric vehicles (EVs).

Gary Ross Hunter, a car insurance expert at Finder, noted that Australian drivers are swiftly embracing electrified vehicles to save money amid the cost of living crisis.

“From saving money to reducing their carbon footprint – Aussie drivers are ditching petrol cars in droves,” Hunter said.

“Consumer demand for electrified cars is at an all-time high with EVs and hybrids becoming a very common sight on our roads.

“The upfront cost is becoming less prohibitive, especially with petrol prices above $2 a litre.

“For pure EVs, the charging infrastructure has also become much more accessible making it feel less daunting to go electric.”

This change in consumer preference is reflected in the sales figures, as electrified vehicles, including Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs), Plug-In Hybrids, and Hybrids, accounted for a substantial 15.6% of the automobile market in May. This percentage marks a significant increase from just 3.2% in 2019.

Notably, the sales of new vehicles in Australia hit an all-time high in July 2023, with a record 96,859 new vehicles sold. This milestone surpasses pre-pandemic levels, underlining the robust momentum in the Australian automobile market.

As the demand for electrified vehicles continues to rise, Australia is on the cusp of a significant shift towards more sustainable and environmentally friendly transportation options.

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