Green owners want more – Californians want EVs and are considering buying or leasing

solar-panel-1393880_640Solar power and electric vehicles are gaining in popularity. Smart Grid Consumer Collaborative (SGCC) has released its latest research, Consumer Driven Technologies, about consumer attitudes and their interest in solar power and electric vehicles. Consumers who have interest in solar power also have interest electric vehicles and vice a versa. Californians are embracing EVs and want the state to do more to encourage their widespread adoption, according to research commissioned by CALinnovates.

EVs Please In CA

Forty-three percent of Californians say they are considering buying or leasing an electric vehicle before 2025, according to the Vrge Analytics survey of 837 conducted August 16, 2016.

When informed that there are EVs in development that are roughly the same price as traditional vehicles with a range of more than 200 miles per charge, sixty-five percent of respondents say they would consider buying or leasing one.

“Californians are ready to trade-in their gas guzzlers for clean cars,” said Mike Montgomery, Executive Director of CALinnovates, an advocacy group focused on improving industries and expanding economic opportunities for Californians through innovative technologies. “This research suggests that the EV industry in the state is at a tipping point. Automakers should seize on this opportunity and go all-in – by putting a fleet of world-class, innovative, affordable EVs on the roads.”

Californians also believe that the state should do more to encourage the development and deployment of additional electric vehicles – with nearly 80% in support. Similar numbers want the state to “push the envelope” in addressing air pollution and global warming. And nearly 70% support Governor Brown’s goal of putting 1.5 million EVs on the road by 2025.

On issues pending before the state government, 66% support the reauthorization of the state’s law to combat global warming, and 60% support increasing tax credits to encourage more Californians to purchase EVs.

Yet, Californians are skeptical of traditional automakers commitment to the electric vehicle marketplace. Only 13% think that traditional automakers are committed to improving air quality through the sale of electric vehicles, while 34% think they are ambivalent, and 25% think that they would rather sell a “big truck.”

Finally, over 50% of Californians said that the oil and gas industry stands in the way of positive change for California.

“Californians clearly want cleaner skies, and they are open to a wide range of policies from Sacramento to get it,” added Montgomery. “Once again, innovation fostered in California is poised to transform industry and the environment alike.”

CALinnovates is a non-partisan coalition of tech companies, founders, funders and non-profits determined to make the new economy a reality.

Consumer Driven Technologies surveyed 1,571 respondents on four distinct technologies and services: residential solar, community solar, green power plans, and electric vehicles. Through oversampling of adopters of residential solar PV and EV technologies, the study supports in-depth analysis of the motivations, concerns and experience of consumers who have recently made decisions regarding their purchase and use.

“By taking a deep dive into the perceptions of early solar and EV users, we are able to provide energy leaders with timely and critical data to help them envision and execute a modernized grid – one that’s best able to implement clean, renewable energy for the 21st century,” said Patty Durand, President/CEO of SGCC.

Key findings from Consumer Drive Technologies indicate:

  • Consistent with previous research, we found consumer demographics and segmentation had a much stronger statistical association with interest in solar PV and EVs than other potential influences.
  • Fewer than 22% of all consumers claim to have a fairly complete understanding of PV or EVs which is a barrier to engagement.
  • Consumers are moving from sole-ownership of solar PV and EVs towards power purchase agreements (PPAs), leases, and shared ownership arrangements including community solar.
  • Roughly one-half of consumers who have solar or EV technology have both. Similarly, consumers interested in one of those technologies have interest in the other.
  • Consumers perceive the value of being connected to the grid and are willing to pay for it.
  • Utilities have a role as an information provider, but less as solar PV and EVs provider.

To explore Consumer Driven Technologies, download the free Executive Summary at SGCC is a nonprofit organization that works to learn the wants and needs of energy consumers in the United States, encourages collaborative sharing of best practices in consumer engagement, and educates the public about the benefits of smart grid.