Rising fuel prices prompt 38% to consider going electric with their next car

Our latest survey reveals that more than one-in-four buyers are spending up to £30 more on fuel than they did earlier this year, prompting many to consider an electric car...

Electric cars charging at Ionity units

Recent increases in fuel prices have prompted 38% of drivers previously not in the market for an electric car to now consider one as their next vehicle, in order to save on running costs in the future, according to the latest research by What Car?.

In our research of 1271 in-market buyers, 88% of drivers were found to be spending more on petrol or diesel as a result of fuel price increases. These increases have also resulted in 38% of those previously not in the market for an electric car to consider one as their next car, while 41% said they would stick with petrol or diesel power in the future. The rest (21%) were already in the market for an electric car. 

Blue Kia EV6 front cornering

In recent weeks, fuel prices have reached nearly £2 per litre, compounding the general cost of living crisis that has impacted households across the country. At the same time, electric car sales account for 16% of the UK new car market for the first six months of 2022, up from 11% for the same period last year, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders. This represents a 50% increase in electric vehicle market share over the same period and shows the significant increase in uptake for electric vehicles. 

Of the drivers impacted by the fuel price increases, 31% said they are now spending between £10 and £20 more per week on fuel, while 26% estimate to be spending between £20 and £30 more per week. 

Cupra Born 2022 charging 2

The fuel price hikes have changed driving habits, too, with 53% of respondents telling What Car? that they’ve reduced how far they drive regularly. More than half of those surveyed (57%) said they drive between 20 and 50 miles less each week, while 21% have reduced their weekly mileage by between 50 and 100 miles, in order to reduce costs. 

One of the key benefits of electric cars is their lower running costs. An electric car can cost as little as two pence per mile to run, compared with more than 20 pence per mile for a petrol or diesel car, and these lower running costs are often cited as a reason for the switch. As the new electric vehicle market grows, so does the used, and this will help even more buyers make the transition.

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