Launching BEV: Is a whole new car launch strategy essential for consumer acceptance?
Sales figures show that EV sales are approaching 2.2 million vehicles worldwide and market penetration of 2.5 percent in 2019. As EV sales continue to increase, car manufacturers are planning to launch hundreds of new models in the next 5 years. Here the big question arises:
How to successfully launch your EV in an immature market?
Higher EV awareness, familiarity, and knowledge would lead to higher consumers’ purchase consideration. We notice that consumers’ EV purchase consideration has increased on average by around 21 percent over the last three years, as they recognize more of the benefits of owning an EV.
Still, significant EV-specific concerns persist. For instance, consumers may still have concerns regarding battery/charging, driving range, and higher costs compared to ICE vehicles. These concerns are very different than those of ICE drivetrains consumers, and the way car manufacturers should address this is also different.
The main issue is consumers’ lack of knowledge on these EV-specific concerns, which leads to a failure to really captivate them. On the other hand, communicating further knowledge on the perceived benefits of owning an EV could just be as important as answering the perceived concerns.
How should car manufacturers launch their EVs?
An EV launch strategy should address these concerns specifically to increase consumers’ purchase consideration.
Keep in mind that those who are buying EVs will differ substantially from those who buy ICE vehicles. Just to name a few demographics, they might have a higher average income, more open to buy cars online, tend to commute more, and might be a bit younger than your usual ICE consumers. An EV launch strategy must be tailored to fit the various targets found in the market.
Beyond the approach above, in order to ensure smooth EV adoption, manufacturers will need to tailor also the in-store experience, the test drive, sales process, TCO know-how, battery and charging know-how.
How can we help?
ADK Insights’ EV launch clinics address these various challenges and implement insights into your launch campaign to make it successful.
We tend to do two types of project for our clients. The first is to explore the market opportunity for product development and innovation, which usually takes place 3-9 months before launch. The second project type looks for improvement opportunities by analyzing early brand rejecters, which usually takes place during or 3-6 months after launch.
Let us know if you’re interested to know more about our approach and to see how we can help.
About the author:
Dam van Benten
25 years research methodology innovator. ADK Insights’ Head of Mobility research division. Specializes in sample recruitment, online consumer access, selection and screening, fieldwork quality control and reporting.