Governments around the world are undoubtedly making life more difficult for many due to corona enforced curfews and curfews, but in some ways, they are also having a positive effect on people's awareness, reports Venson Automotive Solutions, a UK-based provider of solutions and services for company vehicles. The company commissioned a study of how people feel about Corona's impact on the environment. 45 per cent of the people surveyed by Venson said that the radical improvement in air quality as a direct result of significantly less traffic had encouraged them to consider buying an electric car as their next vehicle. A further 17 per cent said they had confirmed the decision they had already made to switch to an electric vehicle because of Corona.
Of the 45 per cent of motorists who are now rethinking their electric car options, 19 per cent said that their next company car or private purchase would be an electric car. The remaining 26 per cent said they intended to become electric car drivers within the next five years. Interestingly, Venson had last conducted the same survey in July 2019. At that time, 41 per cent said they were considering switching to an electric vehicle in general, but 31 per cent also said they were unlikely to do so for another 10 to 15 years. The number of respondents who are considering buying an electric car has therefore not increased significantly. But at least the majority of these people now seem to want to make the purchase much earlier.
The latest Venson survey also shows that the British public expects more from government and businesses to speed up the introduction of electric cars once the UK has recovered from the Corona crisis. This includes further investment in charging infrastructure (62 per cent), the introduction of more Clean Air Zones in major cities (38 per cent) and new legislation to help companies move to fully electric company car or commercial vehicle fleets over the next 5 years (38 per cent).
"In recent years, the cost of electric cars has fallen, battery efficiency has increased and the network of public and private charging stations has grown significantly. All these steps have strengthened consumer confidence in the electric car future. Although registration numbers are increasing, we still have a long way to go. However, fleet managers who want to introduce all-electric fleets could also get employees excited about the idea once they have realized the global environmental benefits". - Alison Bell, Marketing Director at Venson Automotive Solutions
It is true that this study is limited to Great Britain. However, it is reasonable to assume that the same survey would have led to very similar results here and in many other countries.
Is Tesla profiting from the crisis?
Meanwhile, analysts assume that Tesla, in particular, could benefit from the corona pandemic and further extend its lead in electric cars. The reason for this assessment is that other car manufacturers are delaying their electric car programs because of Corona. Long before the pandemic, Tesla already had an impressive lead in electric cars, with more sales than any other established automaker.
Just a few months ago, analysts predicted that Tesla would no longer be competitive once the established carmakers put their money into the mass production of electric cars. Now, however, some of these programs are being delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic, and several analysts believe the situation may further increase Tesla's competitive advantage.
It is true that Tesla is also likely to suffer from delays. But the e-car manufacturer has some advantages up its sleeve, such as not having to work with trade unions, generally being able to react more quickly than more established companies and now having much valuable experience in the production of electric cars.
The launch of the Cybertruck, Tesla's highly controversial pickup truck due to its design, is a good example of how and why Tesla could benefit from Corona. Tesla plans to deliver the Cybertruck for the first time at the end of 2021. One year earlier, at the end of 2020, the still quite young e-car start-up Rivian actually wanted to deliver its R1T pickup truck to customers for the first time. Because of Corona, the market launch of the R1T is likely to be postponed by several weeks, if not months. It is also unclear how the current crisis will affect other electric pickups to be introduced next years, such as the Ford F150 Electric and the GMC Electric Hummer.
Source: Venson - Press release 06.04.2020 // Electrek - Tesla could further its EV lead post-pandemic as legacy automakers delay electric programs