Electric cars have a good ecologic image. Nevertheless, only a minority of consumers would buy one. There is something missing with e-cars, a poll has found.
No product can exist and prevail at the market if there is no interest from the side of the consumers. Electric cars are no exception. This is, despite all politically correct pollution features and despite the non-existent gasoline bill associated with electric cars, the Achilles' heel of the electric cars. It is not the ecologic image that deters the buyers, as some people tend to believe. Electric cars such as the Chevrolet Volt with their powerful acceleration are not regarded as mollycoddles just because they don't spread the typical Ferrari roar. Quite the contrary, they represent a real alternative for macho millionaires who intent to polish up their image as being environmentally aware without abdicating the little speed adrenaline.
One might think that it is the high price that deters consumers. No, this is also not the case, polls show. At least a high price tag does not have any negative effect on the image. High prices may be an obstacle to really buy a Maybach, a Ferrari or a Porsche, but the image of these cars is excellent, not despite their price tag, but because of it.
Electric cars however, are not regarded as such a desirable item. Despite its high price, one should say. A poll among German consumers conducted by automotive tier one Continental AG showed that neither the high price nor the bulky battery pack in the trunk (or even in the place where normally the rear seat is placed, preventing drivers to take along more than just one passenger) are the dominating factors why German consumers would currently refrain from buying an electric car. The reason why most drivers would not buy an electric car even if it would be available is the driving range. Though estimated 80 percent of all drivers don't move more than 20 to 30 km per day and thus would not run into technical problems if they have to charge the battery twice a week or so, the majority of the drivers still needs the feeling to be independent, to have a vehicle that brings them to whichever place they want to. An atavistic remnant of times long ago when a rider had to rely on his horse even in remote and distant regions, psychologists explain this phenomenon.
Perhaps in the future OEMs will have to employ psychologists like today they employ engine designers, electronics developers (and even sound designers who determine the sound of the engine and optimize the sound created by banging the door). These psychologists will have to invent features that make drives feel independent. A saddle, perhaps.