With petrol prices affecting the cost of living, more than half of Australians are considering hybrid or electric cars as alternatives to traditional petrol-fuelled vehicles, according to a new report from Roy Morgan.
The Automotive Currency Report found that 56.1% of Australian drivers would seriously consider a hybrid or fully electric vehicle – up from 52.4% last year, and well ahead of the diesel, the nearest alternative, with 45.5% consideration.
Interest in hybrid vehicles increased from 48.8% to 52.2% over the past 12 months, while interest in fully electric vehicles went from 31.6% to 36.2%.
The report also found that while an estimated 77.5% of vehicles currently run on petrol, only 63.7% of drivers say that their next vehicle will have a petrol engine.
Previously, the Australian Automobile Association (AAA) found that the average Australian metropolitan household is spending $736 more on transport compared with a year ago, with the cost rising $172 from the prior quarter, in part due to rising fuel prices.
The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) also encouraged Australians to shop around for petrol, finding that drivers could save up to $520 per year by buying at the bottom of the petrol price cycle.
Roy Morgan industry communications director, Norman Morris, partially credited the growing interest in hybrid and electric vehicles to major car brands developing and producing more environmentally friendly models:
“A recent example of this is that Volkswagen has just announced that it will launch its last generation of vehicles using combustion engines in 2026 and focus on electric cars instead.”
“Vehicle purchase intentions can be influenced by fuel considerations, however to date, this has been a long term indicator in converting this to actual sales. This is illustrated by the fact that despite high consideration levels among Australians for both hybrid and fully electric vehicles over the last eight years, they still account for around only 1% of total vehicles. The challenge is to convert fuel consideration into vehicle sales. There are some positive signs in this research that this will occur, as evidenced by the fact that there has been a very positive level of drivers saying that their next car is most likely to be a hybrid or fully electric.”