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A couple days ago, Lawrence wrote about Hertz selling 20,000 rental EVs because US consumers aren’t taking to EVs as expected. EVs are also struggling to find solid foothold in the UK. They are often expensive, and consumers are skeptical and unfamiliar with them. To alleviate cost concerns, some countries (like the US) introduced subsidies as an incentive. It appears those subsidies are more important in consumer decisions than previously thought. Bloomberg reports that in the UK (which offers no subsidy to consumers), the EV market has stagnated:

“Electric vehicles’ market share growth has stalled in the UK, leading automakers now subject to a government mandate to seek a tax cut for consumers. Roughly one in six new cars registered last year was battery-electric, in line with the year before, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders said Friday.”

In response to the lack of growth, industry associations are calling on the UK government to decrease taxes on EVs to make them more affordable, which may be the only way for automakers to hit EV adoption targets set by the UK government.

The disappointing sales figures from the UK could foreshadow a developing situation in the US due to the new rules limiting applicability of the IRA EV tax credit. What were relatively simple criteria for eligibility have become more complicated and fewer vehicles qualify this year than last. Consumers must now check individual vehicles for credit applicability. Government incentives for decarbonization are likely to become more common as the transition continues; however, availability and ease of use for consumers must be addressed.  

Beyond EVs, this seems to further indicate consumers won’t make changes that cost more (without governmental help) or change to more sustainable/lower carbon products that force customers into an unfamiliar user experience.

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The Editor

Zachary Barlow is a licensed attorney. He earned his JD from the University of Mississippi and has a bachelor’s in Public Policy Leadership. He practiced law at a mid-size firm and handled a wide variety of cases. During this time he assisted in overseeing compliance of a public entity and litigated contract disputes, gaining experience both in and outside of the courtroom. Zachary currently assists the editorial team by providing research and creating content on a spectrum of ESG… View Profile