When Michael Kurzeja, senior manager of corporate strategy, innovation and sustainability at Exelon, asked how many electric vehicle owners there were in the audience at Greentech Media’s Power & Renewables Summit last month, only a smattering of people put up their hands, as I wrote in Part 1 of this series.
I later wondered, what if he had asked how many people don’t own a car at all? How would the numbers compare?
An informal survey of 10 people at a lunch table revealed there were, in fact, more people who didn’t own a car of any kind — electric or not — than people who did. Asking for a show of hands over sandwiches is in no way scientific. Still, it’s not a great sign if you’re in the EV business, given that attendees at an electricity conference should be prime EV customers.
This taps into the issue raised in last week’s column: How can stakeholders make EVs more compelling to consumers? How can the process be made more consumer-friendly — from the first test drive to charging the vehicle every day?
Experts say meeting potential EV drivers where they’re at and making the entire process as seamless as possible is key for growth in the sector overall. Industry leaders and new market entrants are grappling with this in different ways, and coming up with some pretty interesting solutions, as we’ll explore further in Part 2 of this series.