Press release

23 May 2022 London, GB

Tipping point reached as more than half of global car buyers seek electric vehicle for the first time

LONDON, 23 MAY 2022. The number of consumers looking to buy electric vehicles (EVs) has hit a global tipping point, according to the latest EY Mobility Consumer Index, which shows that 52% of respondents looking to buy a car want to buy an EV.

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Related topics Automotive eMobility
  • EY survey: 52% of global car buyers want an electric vehicle
  • First-time appetite has passed 50% mark, rising 22 points in just two years
  • European and Asian countries lead the way in electric vehicle adoption 

The number of consumers looking to buy electric vehicles (EVs) has hit a global tipping point, according to the latest EY Mobility Consumer Index, which shows that 52% of respondents looking to buy a car want to buy an EV. This is the first time the number has exceeded 50%, representing a rise of 22 percentage points in just two years.

The survey of 13,000 people in 18 countries shows that car buyers in Italy (73%), China (69%) and South Korea (63%) are the most committed to buying an EV, while consumers in Australia (38%) and the US (29%) are the least committed.  

Environmental concerns are cited as the main driver for respondents to buy an EV (38%), although rising penalties on internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles featured for the first time as a key concern (34%).

The survey also shows that those looking to buy an EV are willing to pay a premium. Eighty-eight percent say they would pay more, and 35% are willing to pay a premium of 20% or more, in keeping with 2021’s findings. 

Randy Miller, EY Global Advanced Manufacturing & Mobility Leader says:

“These findings truly mark a tipping point in the global car-buying market. For the first time since EY teams have been collecting this data, more than 50% of consumers across the globe indicate that they want an EV. The speed of this change has also been eye-opening, with a rise of 22 percentage points in just two years. There is no doubt that global gas price rises have played their part in making internal combustion engines more expensive, but environmental concerns also remain top of the list of motivators. Consumers are becoming increasingly socially and environmentally conscious, and they’re willing to pay a premium to meet their environmental standards. It is now up to the industry to meet this demand. If manufacturers are not aware of this trend already, they’re behind the curve and they need to catch up fast.”   

Charging range confidence

The survey also shows that those who already own EVs are less worried about “range anxiety” (how far EVs can travel on one charge) or charging infrastructure. The top motivator for second time EV buyers is that “EVs now have longer ranges”, and just 27% of EV owners were concerned about charging infrastructure compared to 36% of those currently without an EV.

Miller says: “The old issues of worrying about charging infrastructure and the range of EVs will soon come to an end. We know that the vast majority of journeys are relatively short, and as charging infrastructure continues to grow and battery quality continues to increase, we will start to see these concerns fade. It is also clear that those who own EVs know this already. They’re looking at new models with greater range, which in turn is encouraging them to buy an EV again. They also know from experience that the charging infrastructure is there when they need it. As more people buy EVs and realize this for themselves, range anxiety will fade even further.”


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About EY’s Global Advanced Manufacturing & Mobility Sector

Urbanization, changing consumer expectations and emerging digital technologies are reshaping what’s possible, from the production and distribution of goods to the transportation of people. To succeed in this new world of mobility and smart manufacturing, incumbents must transform themselves at unprecedented speed — to think like an innovative start-up, tap into new talent and engage the customer. With experience across the value chain and key technology alliances, our teams show clients how to create efficiencies now while adopting digitization and optionality for long-term growth. Automotive, transportation, aerospace, defense, chemicals and industrial products companies can draw on the strength of our network of cross-industry players and put our diverse range of approaches to use today to equip their businesses for tomorrow.