Americans Remain Sour on Electric Vehicles

Published June 6, 2024

On June 4, the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research released their second annual survey on Americans’ attitudes toward electric vehicles, which showed yet again that most Americans do not intend on buying electric vehicles in the near future.

In 2023, 47 percent of Americans said they are “not too likely/not at all likely” to purchase an electric vehicle (EV) the next time they buy a car while 19 percent answered “extremely likely/very likely.” One year later, those numbers have barely budged. In 2024, 46 percent of Americans remain in the “not too likely/not at all likely” camp, whereas 21 percent responded that they are “extremely likely/very likely” to purchase an EV the next time they buy a car.

When asked why they would not purchase an EV, the major reasons cited by Americans also remain almost unchanged over the past year.

In 2023, 60 percent of Americans said a major reason they are unwilling to buy an EV was “the cost of a new electric vehicle is too high.” This year, 59 percent said the same thing.

In 2023, 39 percent said a major reason was EVs take “too long to change.” This year, 38 percent named this as a major reason.

Among the other major reasons, 47 percent say “the range on an electric vehicle is not far enough,” 39 percent say they simply “prefer a gas engine vehicle,” and 38 percent say they “don’t know of any charging stations nearby.”

Although many on the far-left probably balk at these reasons, they would be wise to at least try to understand the trepidation most Americans have towards EVs.

For several years, leftists have tried to force EVs on the American people under the guise that EVs are better for the environment, will eventually save them money by not having to pay for gasoline, and will also save them money because they claim EVs need less repairs than gasoline-powered vehicles.

However, after more than a decade into their top-down push for EVs, the vast majority of Americans still aren’t buying the EV hype.

The American people are smarter than those in the mainstream media, academia, Hollywood, and other institutions captured by leftists believe them to be. Actually, common sense is much more prevalent among hardworking Americans than it is among the eggheads concocting these ham-fisted schemes to transform how we live our lives on a daily basis.

Most Americans, for instance, know that EVs are probably quite appealing to virtue-signaling leftists living in major urban areas along the coasts. They also instinctively know that these people tend to be quite wealthy, can afford multiple types of cars, do not have to worry about a lack of charging stations because most of them likely charge their EVs in their majestic garages, and generally look down upon those without the means nor the appetite to jump on the EV bandwagon.

The out-of-touch elites who want us all to give up our gasoline-powered cars also carry a tendency to want to control how the rest of us live our lives. They want us to abide by their ridiculous edicts: Buy this type of car. Use this type of lightbulb. Eat this kind of food. Replace your household appliances with what we think you should have. Their penchant for micromanaging knows no bounds.

I think they have gone too far. It is one thing to insist that someone use an LED lightbulb rather than an incandescent lightbulb. In the grand scheme, this is but a small inconvenience. However, it is quite concerning when those in positions of power demand that we stop driving gasoline-powered cars in favor of unproven, expensive, and unreliable EVs.

The American car culture is unique. After World War II, with the rise of the suburbs, Americans equated their cars with freedom. No longer were the masses forced to rely upon public transportation to travel to work, the store, etc. The advent of the gasoline-powered car changed the American lifestyle. People could live in the suburbs and hop in their car to get anywhere they needed or wanted to go. That mentality is still alive and well in the United States, especially as more Americans flee dangerous and decaying cities for suburban and rural enclaves.

Make no mistake, the Biden administration wants you to want an EV. Nevertheless, the problem for Biden and his big government buddies is simple: Most Americans just don’t want to buy an EV. And no amount of propaganda, federal subsidies, or arm-twisting seems able to change that fact.

Photo by Ride_and-Drive. Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic.