Failing to spark interest? Millions of UK motorists set to shun electric cars

Oliver Gill
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Go Ultra Low Electric Vehicle on charge on a London street
The government wants an end to petrol and diesel-powered cars by 2040 (Source: Getty)

The government may want us to ditch petrol and diesel cars by 2040, but most Brits are set to shun electric vehicles because they cost too much.

More than two-thirds of people plan to buy a petrol or diesel car next, with a paltry six per cent of Britons planning to buy an electric car, according to research released today.

Almost half of those polled by website Comparethemarket said they would not opt for an electric or hybrid vehicle because they were too expensive – extrapolated across the population this means 18m motorists will be priced out of eco-friendly cars.

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Meanwhile, two-thirds of people said they were concerned about finding a charging point for their electric car.

Perhaps surprisingly, it was older generations that were more likely to buy an electric or hybrid car.

Over a third (38 per cent) of over-55s would be tempted away from petrol and diesel, compared with under a quarter (24 per cent) of 18 to 24-year-olds.

Comparethemarket head of motor John Miles said: “Despite the government’s plan for all cars to go green by 2040, motorists still have significant and legitimate concerns about electric cars.

For electric cars to really take off, steps must be taken to improve and expand the infrastructure on which they rely and reduce the upfront cost. Whilst the ongoing running cost of an electric car might be lower due to savings on fuel, we are not yet at the point of critical mass where manufacture, repair, insurance and distribution costs fall significantly.

Read more: UK Government to ban the sale of all new petrol and diesel cars from 2040

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