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Germans Living In Small Cities Would Most Benefit From Electric Cars

One of the studies presented at EVS27* in Barcelona last week was a study regarding the segments of the German population that would most benefit (economically) from switching to an electric car. The study, conducted by Patrick Plötz and Till Gnann of Fraunhofer ISI, used a German nationwide travel survey and then broke up the population into 24 subgroups based on employment status and city size. (*Keep up with all my EVS27 coverage here.)

Interestingly, while electric cars are often hyped as great city cars, the study’s key finding was that Germans who would most benefit from owning electric cars would be those living in small cities**. The following graph and table illustrate the point quite well:

Who Are EV Users 1

German electric car owners

EV owner demographics conclusions

It’s rather interesting that the conclusions are counter to the common stereotyping of electric vehicles as being ideal big-city cars. However, it makes a lot of sense. In smaller cities, EVs can cover basically any trip within the city, even zig-zagging trips. Speeds remain lower (less time on highways), which is a benefit for EVs. Furthermore, it’s currently much more convenient for people living in homes with garages to own an electric car than it is for people living in apartment buildings, especially if they don’t have workplace charging available. And, as is the case basically everywhere, those living in small- to medium-sized cities are more likely to have a garage than those living in big cities.



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