Electric car manufacturers are quick to point out that the current range offered by their vehicles is more than enough to satisfy the driving needs of the majority of Americans. In fact, according to Nissan the average daily commute is just 29 miles. And yet consumers demand significantly more before they will view an EV as a viable alternative to a gasoline-powered vehicle.
According to a new report by JD Power and Associates, consumers expect a fully-charged battery electric car to offer a range of 156 miles. That is a full 50% more than what most EVs are currently claiming with cars like the Nissan Leaf rated at 73-miles, the Ford Focus Electric at 76-miles and the Honda Fit EV at 82-miles.
While that gap doesn’t seem insurmountable, consumers don’t list that number as one that’s acceptable for them in order to actually buy an EV. JD Power reports that the range listed by consumers that would make a BEV a realistic purchase option would be 219 miles.
It comes as little surprise then that in the latest U.S. BEV Market Study report, just 2% of respondents said their next vehicle purchase would most likely be an electric car. Compare that to 23% for hybrids, 4% for plug-in hybrids and a full 71% for gasoline or diesel models.