Roy Morgan Research
August 28, 2019

Rising numbers of Australians looking at Electric and Hybrid vehicles for their next set of wheels

Topic: Press Release
Finding No: 8089

New data from Roy Morgan shows that 1,383,000 Australians (aged 14+) are looking to drive a hybrid vehicle, and 537,000 Australians are intending on driving an electric vehicle, as their next car – either new or used.

Both figures represent an increase in the intentions of car drivers from a year ago. The number of Australians looking to drive a hybrid car as their next vehicle increased 341,000 since June 2018. The number of consumers intending to drive an electric vehicle has increased 125,000 since a year ago.

The rise in popularity of environmentally friendly vehicles has significantly increased the number of consumers looking to drive hybrid and electric vehicles for their next car.

Number of Australians intending to drive hybrid and electric vehicles for next car

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source Australia, July 2017 – June 2019. Average interviews per year n=50,516. Base: Australians aged 14+.

Used electric vehicles are increasingly favoured over new electric vehicles

When looking specifically at those intending to purchase an electric vehicle within the next four years, we see 92,000 Australians intending on purchasing a used electric vehicle, up from 53,000 as of June 2018 (an increase of 39,000).

However, the opposite trend was apparent for those looking to purchase a new electric vehicle within four years. As of June 2019, a total of 49,000 Australians were looking to buy a new electric vehicle, compared with 57,000 as of June 2018 (a decrease of 8,000).

This trend for used car purchasing is a really important step for electric vehicles becoming a mainstream technology. This is a similar trend to what was observed with new hybrid technology in the early 2000’s and what will drive the volume of electric vehicle sales into the future.

Number of Australians looking to buy new and used electric vehicles

Source: Roy Morgan Single Source Australia, July 2017 – June 2018 n=280, July 2018 – June 2019 n=316. Base: Australians aged 14+ who want to buy electric vehicle as next car in the next four years.

These are the latest findings from the Roy Morgan Single Source survey derived from in-depth face-to-face interviews with 1,000 Australians each week and over 50,000 each year.

What are some attitudes held by those looking to buy electric vehicles?

We know that 98.8% try to recycle everything they can, 92.7% believe that if we don’t act now we’ll never control our environmental problems, and 89.9% believe they are environmentalists at heart – all far higher than average Australians.
They are also far more likely than the average Australian to go out of their way to learn about new technology, to believe that a percentage of everyone’s income should go to charities, and believe it’s the government’s duty to support those who cannot find work.

Michele Levine, CEO of Roy Morgan, says:

Block Quote
“Over the past twelve months, we have seen a significant increase in the number of Australians looking to drive electric or hybrid vehicles for their next car. These increasing numbers send a clear signal to car manufacturers that Australians are interested in greener technologies.
“The strong growth in popularity of electric and hybrid vehicles suggests that the number of Australians driving these cars will occupy an increasing proportion of the future car industry.
“When we look at the types of electric vehicles people are intending to buy, we see used vehicles growing more strongly than new vehicles, compared with a year ago. This is despite there not yet being a large second-hand electric vehicle market available.

“This new data derived from in-depth face-to-face interviews with over 50,000 Australians as part of the Roy Morgan Single Source survey will no doubt be of interest to electric car manufacturers, who are receiving a clear message from Australian consumers that they are looking for more affordable electric vehicle options.”

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Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size Percentage Estimate
40% – 60% 25% or 75% 10% or 90% 5% or 95%
1,000 ±3.0 ±2.7 ±1.9 ±1.3
5,000 ±1.4 ±1.2 ±0.8 ±0.6
7,500 ±1.1 ±1.0 ±0.7 ±0.5
10,000 ±1.0 ±0.9 ±0.6 ±0.4
20,000 ±0.7 ±0.6 ±0.4 ±0.3
50,000 ±0.4 ±0.4 ±0.3 ±0.2

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