••• automotive research 

It may take more than skyrocketing gas prices to get consumers to make the switch to an electric vehicle, according to a study of U.S. automobile owners conducted by automotive research and shopping website CarGurus. While electric vehicles may seem easier to manage, 39% of those surveyed believe a gas-powered vehicle is more convenient, followed by a hybrid without a plug (26%) and a hybrid with a plug (18%). 

And though drivers have continued to show interest in purchasing electric vehicles, some are hesitant to make the leap, choosing instead to lower their fuel consumption (59%), cut their spending in other areas (44%) and consider alternative fuel-efficient vehicles (30%).

When considering electric vehicle brands, Tesla continues as the crowd favorite (45%), followed by Toyota (44%), Honda (40%), Ford (31%) and BMW (24%). Electric vehicle owners consider themselves early adopters of technology (56%) and would label themselves as environmentalists (35%). 

Comparing this study to the previous one from 2021, the percentage of drivers who indicated they would make the switch to an electric vehicle if gas reached $5/gallon has dropped. In 2021, 56% indicated they were more likely to purchase a vehicle if gas hit $5/gallon. This year, as the possibility becomes more realistic, only 27% are likely to make the purchase and instead would be 70% more likely to if gas reached $8/gallon. Thirty-nine percent of drivers agree that electric vehicles are worth the cost and 67% agree that they are the future, but many are not yet sold. “Electric car batteries don’t last long enough to pay the price,” says one driver. 

CarGurus conducted its survey with 2,176 U.S. automobile owners to better understand the general sentiment towards alternative-fuel automobiles. The first portion of results were obtained on February 28, 2022, before gas prices hit their peak. The second portio...