Based on a KResearch survey on consumer interest and behaviors toward electric vehicles (EVs), most consumers seeking to buy new cars this year seem to be considering EVs as a viable option, especially if attractive marketing campaigns are offered with them. Plug-in hybrid cars, given that their prices are not more than THB200,000 higher than their conventional equivalents, would be the most appealing (that figure is derived from consumers who still do not have varied viewpoints on EVs and may change in the future – depending on carmakers' offers, vehicular specifications and performance, as well as value for money).
The attraction of plug-in hybrid cars seems to be that new feature that allows for two energy inputs, thus being more convenient than models that rely only on batteries. But with further developments expected in EVs, in particular concerning support infrastructure, consumer vehicular preferences may soon tilt more toward such cars.
To better meet consumer preferences mentioned in the survey results, automakers should focus their marketing strategies on long-term economies in power costs, avoid high selling prices relative to conventional models, and retain good performance along with environmental friendliness. However, consumer concerns that may impede any decision to buy EVs involve the rarity of electric charging stations and the time required for charging, as well as maintenance facilities and the prices of the EVs themselves, including for the batteries that can be very expensive. Those issues should be addressed to enhance EV development in Thailand.
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