Why aren’t people buying electric cars in greater numbers.

A study just released confirms exactly what the experts have suspected all along.

It’s due to limited action by the Federal Government, high purchase costs of EVs and their limited availability.

Many organisations have set targets to become carbon neutral, but given transport emissions contribute almost 18 per cent of Australia’s total emissions, converting their fleet is going to be challenging.

Earlier this year the Australasian Fleet Management Association (AFMA) and the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment worked together to find out:

  • Where organisations are in their EV journey?
  • Any barriers and roadblocks they may be encountering?
  • What assistance they might need to transition to zero emissions vehicles?

They heard from 177 organisations, representing many industry verticals and levels of government who control almost 70,000 vehicles.

Thanks to ACA Research and support from AGL (Australia’s largest private investor in renewable energy), AFMA’s Electric Vehicles in Business Fleets Report is available free.

The information and insights in the report are designed to provide a status check for organisational transition to zero emissions vehicles, inform and empower suppliers of products and services to Australian fleets, as well as policy makers at all levels of government.

AFMA Executive Director, Mace Hartley said the information and insights in the report are designed to inform and empower suppliers of products and services to Australian fleets, as well as policy makers at all levels of government.

“While we see many private and public sector organisations choosing to ‘go green’ by reducing vehicle emissions, their underlying motivations can vary significantly,” he said.

AGL says it is leading research, policy and practice into the electrification of transport in Australia, with the launch of its electric vehicle subscription service and by working with fleet customers to overcome the many challenges of transitioning to electric vehicles.

Key findings of the report include:

  • Larger fleets are most likely to have reached a higher level of EV maturity
  • Challenges stopping fleets from implementing EVs earlier are as follows –
    • EV purchase cost (60 per cent)
    • Cost of setting up workplace infrastructure (45 per cent)
    • Limited choice (34 per cent)
  • Less than a third of our respondents are currently operating electric vehicles, suggesting most are still reviewing the suitability of these vehicles for their fleets
  • Despite COVID, 53 per cent of respondents indicated their purchase decisions are business as usual whilst 25 per cent said its watch and wait

You can view the report here.


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Chris Riley has been a journalist for 40 years. He has spent half of his career as a writer, editor and production editor in newspapers, the rest of the time driving and writing about cars both in print and online. His love affair with cars began as a teenager with the purchase of an old VW Beetle, followed by another Beetle and a string of other cars on which he has wasted too much time and money. A self-confessed geek, he’s not afraid to ask the hard questions - at the risk of sounding silly.
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