Dealers Have A Role To Play Educating Buyers On EV Benefits
- August 12, 2019
- Posted by: John Swift
- Category: Automotive Industry
Dealers need to play their part in educating the growing number of buyers who might be tempted by an EV if growth in the sector is to continue by telling them about the wide range of fuel types now available.
At a meeting, last month members of the Vehicle Remarketing Association heard from both Professor David Bailey, of Birmingham University Business School, and Rupert Pontin, well known in the trade and now insight director at Cazana.
“The success or failure of the electric vehicle market in all of its many forms depends on consumers being comfortable with the technology. We are moving from a phase where the market is dominated by early adopters who are happy to do lots of research about the choices facing them to one where EVs will become part of the mass market. For that to happen, we need to provide information.
“Even people who work in the sector sometimes have trouble distinguishing between PHEVs, BEVs, petrol MHEVs, diesel MHEVs and more. How do we expect customers to be able to make the right choice for their needs?
“The fact is that we need to do more to help them, especially as more and more of these vehicles start to filter through into the used market. The fact is that any vehicle that consumers do not understand is likely to be worth less money. The advantages of each type need to be made clear using terminology that the car buyer appreciates and understands.”
His view is backed by others in the used sector…
The Tipping Point of Acceptance
Shoreham Vehicle Auctions recently said the market has reached the `tipping point of acceptance’ for EVs. Dealers are becoming more confident in stocking them and buyers – or at least those for whom an EV can fit into their lives – more confident in buying them.
Alex Wright, SVA’s Managing Director, said:
“EVs need a used market that is alive and prospering. That’s why we have seen greater acceptance during 2018 and into 2019 that has boosted residuals. Leasing companies and finance companies can now underwrite EVs confident of a vehicle’s value in three-to-four years’ time which makes monthly rentals more competitive for companies and drivers alike.”
Pointing out that the used market for EVs quadrupled in just two years between 2016 and last year, albeit at a very low base from 6,000 to 25,000, Alex added:
“It’s exciting to be in the used market at this time and we look forward to continuing to support dealers in keeping pace with understanding new technologies and how to sell used EVs.”
Sam Watkins, chair at the VRA, said that used EV values and demand continue to rise but also underlined the need for dealers to educate and guide customers in the right direction.
“In a very short time, car buyers are going to be walking into showrooms faced with multiple power options for what is ostensibly the same vehicle. All of these choices will be the right one for some customers, but the industry needs to start delivering useful guidance on the differences and advantages.”