FT - Mer Charging-8

Only one in ten EV owners are female, according to a new poll of more than 2,000 electric car owners.

The survey, which was conducted by Bonnet, the independent charging app in the UK and Europe, also found that households with higher incomes are much more likely to own an EV – with nearly a third of drivers saying their household income is above £81,000.

Other headline findings include:

  • Most car owners tend to be married (57%) with only 12% drivers saying they are single.
  • Cost savings remain the main reason people choose an electric car – with half of people identifying the reason – with only a third saying the environment
  • Four in ten drivers are public charging their car each week – with 57% picking chargers based on price.
  • Only 3% said the brand name or reputation of a charging network affected their decision on where to charge up – and only 15% choose locations based on reliability.

Patrick Reich, CEO and co-founder of EV charging app Bonnet, commented: “These findings suggest that EV owners are currently mostly male and from high-income households – with only one in ten drivers surveyed identifying as women. This is a gap that we need to bridge as EV ownership needs to work for everyone. The survey also highlights how important public charging remains to most drivers, with affordability of chargers driving people’s choice of locations.

“Our mission at Bonnet has been to support people’s transition, and we are making it as easy possible for drivers – whether they are just going electric or a long-time owner – to charge up across the UK and Europe through one app – rather than needing dozens of accounts.

“It’s still early days, though as more and more people continue to jump into EVs, drivers will become increasingly familiar with them and how they work. We know from talking to our customers that many people tend to buy EVs after hearing the positive experiences of friends, family and colleagues.”

Founder and CEO of Electrifying.com Ginny Buckley said: “We know that women directly influence 85% of all car buying decisions and 46% of driving licence holders in the UK identify as female, so the clear gender imbalance in electric car ownership is something that both industry and legislators need to take seriously.

“Everyone – regardless of their gender – should feel comfortable making the switch to electric and this can’t be done without addressing drivers’ concerns. For example, our own data tells us that nearly 25% of people have felt unsafe when charging in public. This is clearly a huge issue, particularly for women, as plugging in an electric car should be as safe, easy and reliable as refilling it with fuel.

“Apps like Bonnet are paving the way for this to happen, but more needs to be done to make sure everyone can be brought along on the journey. We need a more inclusive conversation about electric cars, as well as improved lighting, CCTV cameras and better signage at all public chargers. Without taking these steps, we risk leaving vast amounts of people behind in the energy transition.”