Trendspotting: 5 Ways EV Drivers Are Evolving

How has the profile of EV drivers been changing since the latest generation of plug-in pioneers first started buckling-up in 2011? Our research division, PlugInsights, has been poring over more than 7,000 survey responses from its massive driver survey panel, hunting for trends based on the year the EV was acquired. Here’s a sample of 5 fascinating things they just found.

EV owner/leasers were overwhelmingly over the age of 45 back in 2011-2012. Since then, younger hands have been increasingly gripping the wheel, and we predict that by next year, over half of all EV acquirers will be under 45.

It’s still mainly men who buy or lease EVs, but women are progressively catching up. It’s an encouraging sign that the category is slowly “normalizing”: becoming more and more like the general auto buying/leasing population.

While “married with kids” status still dominates, there’s a pronounced trend toward more single drivers, and drivers without children. PHEVs, in particular, are attracting more and more single drivers.

As more drivers join the “plug-in club,” we are starting to see a modest tailing off of the strength with which drivers agree they’re “informed on environmental issues.” Today, a lot fewer people ”strongly agree,” and now most simply “agree.” Still, there’s no question that today’s EV-drivers are eco-minded.

As the circle of EV owners/leasers widens, we’re seeing home solar penetration dropping steadily. Early adopters had an astonishing 25% penetration rate, but among those who adopted an EV in 2015, it was down to only 12%. Still, given that the national home solar penetration rate is well under 1%, today’s 12% remains quite remarkable.

For more information, or to talk about commissioning custom PlugInsights survey research using the world’s largest EV driver panel, contact Norman Hajjar at norman@pluginsights.com.