Close to 50% of Singaporean drivers are ready to go electric: BMW Asia

PHOTO: Facebook/BMWGroup

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According to a new survey conducted by BMW Group Asia, 46 per cent of Singaporean drivers want to buy an electrified vehicle as their next car, with a nearly even split between a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV - 24 per cent) and a fully electric vehicle (EV - 22 per cent ).

With this year’s news of Singapore shifting to an environmentally conscious city, electric vehicles (EVs) have been one of the biggest talk points.

PHOTO: BMW Group

This online survey polled 1,000 Singaporeans and its finding is consistent, with the majority of respondents opting to play their role in a more environmentally-conscious world. Support from car manufacturers is expected to drive this shift as Singaporeans prepare to adapt to life with an EV.

BMW explored topics such as attitudes towards the impact of EVs on the environment, as well as factors that would motivate them to purchase an EV.

Singaporean drivers see the benefits of owning an EV

PHOTO: BMW Group

According to the survey conducted by BMW Group Asia, three out of four Singaporean drivers are familiar with EVs.

However, a large percentage, or 41 per cent if you want to be more specific, still have misconceptions about charging and range. The common thought? EVs are difficult to charge and have limited range.

PHOTO: BMW Group

87 per cent of respondents believed that the reductions in carbon emissions are of key benefit to the environment. 65 per cent of them then added on that the government incentives are another factor, with the 59 per cent of total respondents also highlighting the cost savings from using electricity instead of petrol.

The number of EVs purchased in Singapore increased by 27 per cent in 1H 2021 compared to all of 2020. However, the company believes that more should be done to educate consumers about charging and range.

Post-purchase support strong motivators for EV purchase

PHOTO: BMW Group

Respondents ranked post-purchase support, a long warranty period of up to 10 years (64 per cent), and good after-sales service (58 per cent), as the third and fourth most important motivators to go electric, respectively.

Performance (55 per cent), vehicle build quality (43 per cent), and technological features (42 per cent ) were all potential areas of consideration for car buyers. Brand loyalty was also cited as a deciding factor by 30 per cent of respondents.

Since 2014, BMW has been one of the first manufacturers to offer a fully electric vehicle in Singapore.

“With more original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) offering competitive electrified vehicles, customer confidence in aftersales service may be the deciding factor,” said Mr Fernando Ferrer, Director of Customer Support, BMW Group Asia.

Government incentives and infrastructure to drive EV uptake

PHOTO: BMW Group

Singaporean drivers continue to be pragmatic when it comes to purchasing a car. When asked about the most important motivators that would drive them to switch to an EV, government incentives and access to public charging facilities were cited as the most important (72 per cent), with access to charging at home close behind at 70 per cent.

BMW Group Asia is the market leader in the electric vehicle (EV) space in Singapore, with the most electrified vehicle offerings in the country.

“Government support in the form of EV-specific initiatives and grants, combined with the growing infrastructure of charging stations, makes this a very exciting time for us,” said Mr Steve Chan, Head of Government & External Affairs, Southeast Asia (ASEAN), BMW Group Asia.

EV usage in Singapore

PHOTO: BMW Group

A third of these drivers stated that their primary reason for driving was to run daily errands (62 per cent), commute to and from work (40 per cent), and go around on weekends (33 per cent ). Three in four also said they would rent an EV if they needed a car for a short trip or for a few weeks.

Ms Preeti Gupta, Corporate Affairs Director & Sustainability Lead, BMW Group Asia stated, “Today's electric vehicles have more than enough range to support daily driving needs.”

“The average Singaporean driver commutes 55 kilometres per day, and many electric vehicles allow them to drive for four to eight days without needing to recharge.”

These statistics from BMW seem to point out that consumers at large are ready for the EV revolution. It seems to suggest an upward trend of EV adoption, possibly bolstered by generous government rebates.

This article was first published in Motorist.