Buyers Prefer Hybrids Over Electric As Their Next Cars: Deloitte Study

The electric vehicle (EV) revolution has been steadily gaining momentum, but a surprising twist has emerged in the Indian car market. A recent study by Deloitte India reveals a fascinating trend – buyers are increasingly favoring hybrid vehicles over EVs for their next car purchase. This contradicts the widely held belief that EVs would dominate the future of personal transportation.

Buyers Prefer Hybrids Over Electric As Their Next Cars: Deloitte Study
Toyota Innova Hycross


The study, which surveyed over 2,000 potential car buyers across 15 major Indian cities, found that 44% of respondents preferred hybrid vehicles as their next car, compared to only 37% who opted for EVs.

This 7% gap highlights a significant shift in consumer sentiment, particularly considering the government’s push for EV adoption and the growing environmental concerns.

Buyers Prefer Hybrids Over Electric As Their Next Cars: Deloitte Study

So, what’s driving this unexpected preference for hybrids over EVs? The study delves into the key reasons behind this trend:

1. Range Anxiety and Charging Infrastructure: Despite the rapid expansion of charging stations, concerns about range anxiety remain a major deterrent for many EV buyers. The fear of running out of power, especially on long journeys, is a significant hurdle for widespread EV adoption. Hybrids, on the other hand, offer the comfort of a backup gasoline engine, alleviating range anxiety and providing peace of mind to drivers.
2. Higher Upfront Cost of EVs: The high upfront cost of EVs compared to their gasoline and hybrid counterparts is another major barrier. While government subsidies help bridge the gap, they often come with limitations and eligibility criteria. For many buyers, the affordability factor makes hybrids a more attractive option.
3. Lack of Awareness and Misinformation: Despite growing awareness about EVs, there’s still a significant knowledge gap among many potential buyers. Misconceptions about battery life, charging time, and maintenance costs create doubts and hinder purchase decisions. Hybrids, with their established technology and familiarity, are seen as a safer bet for some consumers.
4. Preference for Familiar Technology: Many car buyers, especially those in older age groups, are hesitant to embrace the completely new technology of EVs. Hybrids offer a smoother transition, combining the familiarity of a gasoline engine with the benefits of electric power, making them a more palatable option for technology-averse buyers.
5. Lower Maintenance Costs: The study also found that potential buyers perceive hybrid vehicles to have lower maintenance costs compared to EVs. While the long-term maintenance costs of EVs might be lower, the initial service and repair costs are often higher, deterring some buyers.

Buyers Prefer Hybrids Over Electric As Their Next Cars: Deloitte Study

The Deloitte study’s findings offer valuable insights into the current Indian car market dynamics and highlight the need for targeted strategies to address the key concerns of potential EV buyers. While hybrids might be holding the edge today, the EV market is rapidly evolving. Addressing range anxiety through infrastructure development, bringing down upfront costs through subsidies and incentives, and educating consumers about the benefits of EVs are crucial steps to accelerate India’s EV adoption journey.

It’s important to note that the study’s findings are specific to the Indian market, and consumer preferences might vary in other regions. However, the key reasons identified for the preference for hybrids over EVs offer valuable insights for the global automotive industry as it navigates the transition towards a more sustainable future.

Via ETAuto