Are dealerships prepared for the soaring consumer interest in electric vehicles? / 27 July, 2022
Are dealerships prepared for the soaring consumer interest in electric vehicles?

It’s no secret that consumers’ buying intentions for electric vehicles have grown a lot within the last year. This leaves the question, are retailers prepared?



Well, new figures released by Auto Trader show that over half of retailers feel unprepared and are not strategically ready to start selling EVs. 341 firms responded to Auto Traders study and 50.4% had never sold an electric car.



The Road to 2030 report shows a significant uplift in the volume of EV leads sent to retailers from Auto Trader, with one in four new car leads now for an electric vehicle. Interest has also increased for used EVs, as advert views and searches have increased 51% April-June on the same period in the prior year. 

Although the used EV market is still fairly new, it’s estimated by 2030 there will be nine million EVs on UK roads, at which point half of all 3–5-yearold cars will be an EV. As reported by the SMMT, sales of new EVs in the first half of 2022 grew 56% on the previous year, and now account for around one in seven of all new car sales in the UK, highlighting a mismatch between retailer readiness and consumer interest. 



Marc Palmer, Brand Director at Auto Trader, said: “There’s a massive opportunity here for retailers to start to think about how they will sell EVs and how they will arm themselves with the right information and, crucially, the right training. 



“It’s likely that the earliest interactions many retailers will have with EVs is at used car auctions. Auction lists will soon start to fill up with used EVs and retailers won’t be able to rely on instinct and experience as they have in the past with used ICE vehicles.  



“They’ll need to take a data-led approach to buying used EVs, including what to bid for and how much to bid, to ensure their stock offering evolves with consumer and environmental demands. EVs aren’t to be feared, and they certainly shouldn’t be ignored as very soon they will become a meaningful part of a retailer’s’ forecourt.”   



Auto Trader’s soon to launch a new Retailer Performance Masterclass, available here, dedicated to selling electric vehicles which is designed to help reduce knowledge gaps and improve retailer EV confidence and capability.



With increased government incentives and relentless fuel price increases, more and more of us are making the switch to all-electric vehicles, which will in-turn grow the second-hand car market. Dealerships will need to adapt and invest in educating their teams so they are confident in the product, otherwise they are at risk of being left behind. 



For advise on purchasing an second-hand EV, check out our ‘Best Advice for Buying a Used Electric Car’ article. Click here



If you own an electric car, brand new or second hand, you will need EV insurance. NOVO Insurance provides specialist EV Car Insurance, with flexible cover to suit your specific needs, as part of a friendly and helpful personal service. NOVO also guarantees the use of a ‘like-for-like’ electric loan vehicle if your EV is off the road, due to an accident or repair work, and offers a comprehensive Incident Management solution.