Electric cars? That is why the Italians do not buy them

ROM – Electric cars? The Italians are willing to buy, but to go from intentions to facts, they are waiting for the price to drop significantly, because at the moment the difference in terms of thermobiles is still around 30%. The turning point may be in 2030, when the current price gap is expected to be eliminated even for the models in the cheaper segments, and therefore more accessible. In 8 years, new registrations of electric cars can therefore account for 51% of the total demand in Italy. And by 2050, as many as 77%, or almost 4 out of 5 drivers, could buy one.

This is the scenario set out in the report “Electric mobility: inevitable or not? Consumer perspective analysis”, created by Motus-E and Quintegia, with the support of the European Climate Foundation, which analyzes the attitudes of 14,052 consumers in Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Spain, Poland and the Netherlands, of which 2,004 in Italy alone, argue that the decisive factor in purchasing an electric car is price, while autonomy, recharging and operating costs are secondary aspects. price parity, which essentially depends on the reduction in the cost of batteries, the introduction on the market of models belonging to lower segments and the use of dedicated platforms, which will allow car manufacturers to save on production costs between 10 and 30%. exclusively used platforms dedicated to electric vehicles, the price parity between power supplies would have been reached by 2028, which will bring the demand for electricity up to 80% by 2030. To this end, incentives and initiatives at state and European level will continue to play an important role.

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The study also shows that consumers find neither synthetic fuels nor hydrogen a compelling alternative to electric cars. Synthetic fuels – the study emphasizes – are about 80% more expensive than traditional fuels, and it is estimated that price parity can not be achieved at least until 2037. To compare with electric cars, total cost in 2030 for conventional cars powered by synthetic fuels would be 23 % higher. So if between 2025 and 2035, synthetic fuels were introduced to the market, the zero-emission power supply that consumers most demand would still be electric. A scenario that would be reproduced even if a significant number of hydrogen-powered car models were introduced to the market from 2025 (especially in the medium-high segments), which it is estimated would have an average premium of 12,000 euros compared to an electric car, destined to drop to 4,800 euro in 2040.

Even access to public charging infrastructure, often cited as one of the biggest barriers to buying an electric car, according to 63% of respondents, would not be an obstacle to buying an electric car if there were enough points for fast charging at all petrol stations. Furthermore, for 77% it is important to have access to charging stations in the places they visit (eg public car parks in the city center), and 72% would drive long trips by electric car if there were fast charging stations on the motorway and in the main arteries.

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The study, on the other hand, highlights a 12% lower tendency to buy an electric car if consumers did not have access to home charging. In particular, in order for consumers who do not have access to private charging to consider their purchase, an electric car should cost on average 4,600 euros less than alternative power supplies. Although the autonomy of the batteries is relevant, the study is not considered to be a decisive factor in the purchase choice. It is estimated that if the purchase price and operating costs of the different power supplies were the same, most consumers would buy an electric car if the range was between 270 and 635 km. After drawing this scenario, the study concludes by arguing that the transition to electrical is inevitable. Therefore, institutions are advised not to waste investment on other fuels, such as synthetic fuels or hydrogen, which should be limited to heavy transport, but concentrate on the transition to electricity. To promote parity in the purchase price as soon as possible and to upgrade the public charging infrastructure and to facilitate the installation of home charging.

However, in order to invest resources efficiently, it is necessary to draw up a support plan for the development of precise and detailed electricity, which systematises all the main actors involved in the conversion, private and business consumers, car manufacturers, energy, supply chain companies and public bodies. It is certainly not an easy task

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