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News52% of Canadian New Car Buyers Have No Intention of Going Electric

52% of Canadian New Car Buyers Have No Intention of Going Electric

New J.D. Power Report Highlights Challenges for EV Adoption in Canada

In a recent study conducted by J.D. Power released on May 30, it was revealed that a significant portion of Canadian car buyers are very hesitant to consider electric vehicles (EVs) for their next purchase.

Despite increasing sales of EVs in Canada, more than half of potential buyers surveyed are likely to stick to a vehicle with a good-old petrol engine under the bonnet for their next set of new wheels.

According to the study, only 10.9% of Canadian new-vehicle shoppers stated they are “very likely” to consider an EV, while 17.6% are “somewhat likely” to consider one. In stark contrast, 52% of respondents indicated they are “very unlikely” to consider an EV, and 19.6% are “somewhat unlikely.” In short, roughly three-quarters consumers will not purchase an EV in the near future.

The decline in interest is notable when compared to previous years. The 2022 study showed that 47% of respondents were open to including EVs in their new-vehicle prospects. This figure dropped to 34% last year and has now fallen further to 28.5%.

Key factors contributing to this hesitation include range anxiety, the perceived high cost of EVs, and limited charging infrastructure. J.D. Ney, director of J.D. Power Canada’s automotive practice, highlighted the affordability issue, stating, “Auto manufacturers are staking their futures on EVs and investing massive sums in battery manufacturing facilities in Canada, but the reality is that they are still considerably more expensive than comparable gas-powered vehicles.”

Ney, as reported by Automotive News Canada, also pointed out that while affordability remains a significant barrier, issues like vehicle range and lack of consumer experience with EVs can be addressed through broad consumer education.

Despite the hesitancy, zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) adoption in Canada is reaching new heights. Battery-electric (EV) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV) accounted for 12% of vehicle registrations in the fourth quarter of 2023, with ZEVs making up 10.8% of total registrations for the entire year. This marks the first-time adoption rates have surpassed the one-in-10 threshold.

Federal rebate claims further indicate a growing interest in EVs. In the first three months of 2024, there were 41,101 rebate requests for battery-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles eligible for Ottawa’s Incentives for Zero-Emission Vehicles program. This is a 135% increase from the same period the previous year, which saw 17,513 claims, according to data from Transport Canada.

The study’s findings are based on responses from nearly 3,000 Canadian consumers polled in March and April. It also found that over half of Canadian consumers have never even been in an EV, let alone owned one.


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Matt St-Pierre
Matt St-Pierre
Trained as an Automotive Technician, Matt has two decades of automotive journalism under his belt. He’s done TV, radio, print and this thing called the internet. He’s an avid collector of many 4-wheeled things, all of them under 1,500 kg, holds a recently expired racing license and is a father of two. Life is beautiful. Send Matt an emai


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