Majority of Americans say they are unlikely to purchase electric vehicles

Though, a new Yahoo Finance/Ipsos survey finds that many are also unaware of government programs subsidizing EVs

The author(s)
  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Jennifer Berg Vice President in Ipsos’ U.S. Public Affairs Team
  • Talia Wiseman Senior Research Manager, US, Public Affairs
Get in touch

Washington DC, October 11, 2023 

New Yahoo Finance/Ipsos polling on electric vehicles finds that many Americans say they are unlikely to buy an electric vehicle (EV) as their next car. However, a hypothetical uptick in gas prices may sway some people to consider EVs. Additionally, concerns with EVs abound, even as many Americans are unaware of government programs working to subsidize and address some concerns around EVs. However, a slim majority of Americans are supportive of these programs. For more, read Yahoo Finance’s story here.

  • One in three Americans say it is likely that the next time they purchase a vehicle, it will be an electric one (31%). Those with a college degree (47%) are significantly more likely to buy an electric vehicle than those with a high school diploma or less (18%). Millennials (40%) and Gen Xers (33%) are significantly more likely to buy an EV compared to Baby Boomers (22%).
  • Americans are split in their level of continued interest in electric vehicles. Compared to this time last year, a quarter of Americans say they are more interested in getting a fully electric or hybrid vehicle for their next vehicle, while another quarter say they are less interested (24%). About two in five say there is no difference (42%).
  • When asked how the price of gas would affect the likelihood of purchasing an EV, there is a difference in effect by small increases in gas compared to large increases. Forty-nine percent say they are more likely to purchase an EV if gas averages $6 or $8 a gallon, while 56% say they are more likely to purchase an EV if gas averages $10 a gallon.
  • Top concerns about purchasing an EV are lack of charging stations (77%), lack of driving range (73%), and the overall cost when compared to gas vehicles (70%). About one-third are concerned about the lack of options for EV types or brands (37%) and driving or styling characteristics (33%).
    • Americans with at least some college education are significantly more concerned about the driving range (77%) and availability of charging stations (80%), compared to those with a high school diploma or less (66% and 71%, respectively).
    • Baby boomers are significantly more concerned about the overall cost of EV’s (75%), the driving range (81%), and the environmental impact (68%) compared to younger generations.
  • Less than a third of Americans are familiar with government programs to provide tax breaks on EV purchases (30%), recent reductions in the sale prices of EV’s, and deals to make universal charging networks for EV’s (20%).
  • A slim majority of Americans support government programs to reduce U.S. dependence on fossil fuels (54%) and government incentive programs to encourage EV purchases (52%). These proposals are more popular among the college-educated (69% and 68%, respectively). Additionally, both also garner a majority of support among Democrats (69% and 72%) and independents (57% and 60%).
  • There is significantly less support for vehicle manufacturers slowly phasing out the sale of new gasoline vehicles (30%) or government restrictions on the sale of new gasoline vehicles (21%). The majority do not support either of these plans, regardless of education level or political identity.

About the Study 

This Ipsos poll was conducted between September 29-October 1, 2023, by Ipsos using the probability-based KnowledgePanel®. This poll is based on a nationally representative probability sample of 1,025 general population adults age 18 or older.

The margin of sampling error for this study is plus or minus 3.30 percentage points at the 95% confidence level, for results based on the entire sample of adults. The margin of sampling error takes into account the design effect, which was 1.18 for all respondents.

In our reporting of the findings, percentage points are rounded off to the nearest whole number. As a result, percentages in a given table column may total slightly higher or lower than 100%. In questions that permit multiple responses, columns may total substantially more than 100%, depending on the number of different responses offered by each respondent.

The survey was conducted using KnowledgePanel, the largest and most well-established online probability-based panel that is representative of the adult US population. Our recruitment process employs a scientifically developed addressed-based sampling methodology using the latest Delivery Sequence File of the USPS – a database with full coverage of all delivery points in the US. Households invited to join the panel are randomly selected from all available households in the U.S. Persons in the sampled households are invited to join and participate in the panel. Those selected who do not already have internet access are provided a tablet and internet connection at no cost to the panel member. Those who join the panel and who are selected to participate in a survey are sent a unique password-protected log-in used to complete surveys online. As a result of our recruitment and sampling methodologies, samples from KnowledgePanel cover all households regardless of their phone or internet status and findings can be reported with a margin of sampling error and projected to the general population.

The data for the total sample were weighted to adjust for gender by age, race/ethnicity, education, Census region, metropolitan status, and household income. The demographic benchmarks came from the 2022 March Supplement of the Current Population Survey (CPS).

  • Gender (Male, Female) by Age (18–29, 30–44, 45–59 and 60+)
  • Race/Hispanic Ethnicity (White Non-Hispanic, Black Non-Hispanic, Other, Non-Hispanic, Hispanic, 2+ Races, Non-Hispanic)
  • Education (Less than High School, High School, Some College, Bachelor or higher)
  • Census Region (Northeast, Midwest, South, West)
  • Metropolitan status (Metro, non-Metro)
  • Household Income (Under $25,000, $25,000-$49,999, $50,000-$74,999, $75,000-$99,999, $100,000-$149,999, $150,000+)
  • Party ID (Democrat, Republican, Independent, Something else)

For more information on this news release, please contact:

Chris Jackson
Senior Vice President, US
Public Affairs
+1 202 420-2025
[email protected]

About Ipsos 

Ipsos is one of the largest market research and polling companies globally, operating in 90 markets and employing over 18,000 people.

Our passionately curious research professionals, analysts and scientists have built unique multi-specialist capabilities that provide true understanding and powerful insights into the actions, opinions and motivations of citizens, consumers, patients, customers or employees. Our 75 solutions are based on primary data from our surveys, social media monitoring, and qualitative or observational techniques.

Our tagline "Game Changers" sums up our ambition to help our 5,000 customers move confidently through a rapidly changing world.

Founded in France in 1975, Ipsos has been listed on the Euronext Paris since July 1, 1999. The company is part of the SBF 120 and Mid-60 indices and is eligible for the Deferred Settlement Service (SRD). ISIN code FR0000073298, Reuters ISOS.PA, Bloomberg IPS:FP


The author(s)
  • Chris Jackson Senior Vice President, US, Public Affairs
  • Jennifer Berg Vice President in Ipsos’ U.S. Public Affairs Team
  • Talia Wiseman Senior Research Manager, US, Public Affairs