Around the world, electric vehicle adoption is increasing and in some countries like Norway, more than 50% of new car sales are EVs. With Australia sitting at below 1%, we are being left behind, which raises the question of how we might go about catching up.
The need to transition our vehicle fleet is clear, with the transport sector accounting for a large portion of our overall emissions. If the nation is to transition to a zero-emission future, on a timeframe like 2050, we need to address this issue quickly. The typical lifespan of a car is are 15 years, which means a ban on ICE vehicles in 2035 would be the absolute latest, to ensure those ICE vehicles are at the end of their life and retired by 2050.
With that as the backdrop, now we turn to what positive incentives the Government (federal and state) could provide to accelerate the adoption of the electric vehicles.
The single biggest factor that stands out right now is the price. While there’s a lot of public education about the range, charging options, lower ongoing costs and minimal servicing, none of that matters unless you can afford to buy an EV.
The cheapest EV on the market in Australia today is the MG ZS EV, with a drive away price of $43,990. While there are plenty of people that buy in the $40-50k price bracket, there’s a lot more than buy in the $30-40k range, which would mean a car at that number, would be possible for more Australian families.
Around the world, Governments understand the need to move to EVs and have incentive new vehicle buyers with a discount, or rebate. Here’s the list of countries that currently office incentives for buying zero-emission vehicles.
We can see that it’s common to see discounts of as much as A$10,000 off the price of the vehicle. If this was to be adopted in Australia, it would see the starting price of that MG ZS EV, drop from $43,990 to $33,990. At the low $30k bracket, it’s a number that’s a lot more approachable to people for a really practical, capable electric SUV.
As you go up the price bracket to more popular electric vehicles like the Tesla Model 3, you’re now talking about a driveaway price of $62,262.
For those who prefer to lease vehicles, lowering the purchase price, also lowers their repayments, making leased EVs a more realistic proposition, which would also help accelerate the adoption locally.