Your take-home messages:
Participants see Flip the Fleet as a comprehensive and trusted source of EV data and information but believe that it can play an even bigger role in increasing EV ownership. Credibility is paramount; it has to reflect the good news and the bad in issues affecting EVs in New Zealand.
This month’s poll:
Our nineteenth 1-click survey proposed that “Flip the Fleet project will accelerate EV uptake in NZ.” Participants could choose between the following five options:
(1) Strongly agree
(3) Neither agree or disagree
(5) Strongly disagree
The poll was sent to 798 participants in Flip the Fleet on 25 May 2018. There were 375 responses by 29 May, including 293 who provided detailed comments and answers to 6 other questions.
The large majority (83%) either “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that Flip the Fleet would accelerate EV uptake; 16% “neither agreed nor disagreed”; 1% “disagreed”; and none “strongly disagreed” (Fig. 1).
Fig.1 Responses of 398 participants to the proposition that Flip the Fleet will accelerate EV uptake in New Zealand, May 2018.
This month’s poll was different from usual
The monthly Flip the Fleet survey is usually about you and your EV; this month, we made it all about us. Thank you for your support and suggestions on how to increase our voltage in the EV market. Your responses will be used by Flip the Fleet’s Dima Ivanov and Danial Myall in October when they present two papers on Flip the Fleet to the world’s largest annual four-day EV conference in Kobe, Japan (EVS 31 www.evs31.org – so your collective opinion will count at the hub of international EV manufacture. We promise we’ll revert to a simple, five-second question next month.
Our survey aimed to define what you like and dislike about Flip the Fleet and how we can improve our services to you and prospective EV buyers. Over the coming months we will endeavour to put your advice into action by improving the software and communication of your information, starting with a new performance indicator in this month’s reports: a calculation of the number of pine trees required to sequester the same amount of CO2 you avoid in tailpipe emissions each month.
We are overwhelmed by your responses – there are far more insights here than we can do justice to in just one post. We will concentrate on your answers to the main question about whether Flip the Fleet will make a difference, and drip-feed responses to other questions in future posts.
What makes you click?
Here’s a word cloud of the comments you provided to the main question, using the ‘Wordle’ package: the larger the font, the more times that word appeared in your testimony (Fig. 2). You can see at a glance that our project is EV and people focussed. You referred to information, data, evidence, facts and knowledge as key parts of our purpose and messaging.
This is promoting awareness and supporting decision-making for accelerating EV uptake. As one respondent put it: “It provides independent data regarding EVs without pressure from salesmen.” “The program is data and science-based and therefore has credibility with members of the public who are considering purchasing an EV,” said another. And another: “The project cuts through the myths and misinformation about EVs.” There was recurring comment about the value of local New Zealand evidence – that EVs fit into our own place and lives.
Figure 2: A word cloud of the most frequent 100 words used in your responses to the main question of the survey. The larger the word, the more often you mentioned it.
But some cautioned: “The problem for Flip the Fleet is that it is an advocacy project and its contributors have a strong advocacy/evangelical position. Consequently, the publications of Flip the Fleet reflect that attitude and it’s difficult for the wider public to take them seriously.”
That’s a valid point. Flip the Fleet needs to share the bad news with the good: the recent Nissan Leaf battery issue is the prime example: “The honesty of highlighting the issues with the 30KW battery reassures people that Flip the Fleet can be trusted.” But there is also danger here: “Revealing the Leaf 30kwh battery degradation issue is a good thing, but it also has the potential to be overblown and to become a huge anti-EV argument ‘all batteries degrade within 2 years’ etc.”
Similarly, last month’s survey on charging systems revealed congestion, difficulty with access and faults in some areas – it was negative news, but to be resolved, it needs to be in the public arena and backed up by solid data. Flip the Fleet’s data is provided by New Zealand EV owners for New Zealand EV owners. It’s not glossy-brochure data from overseas car markets; it’s dependable, home grown feedback.
Some participants particularly like our mix of numbers and personal testimony from the 1-click surveys. “Partly you are making [EVs] more visible, but also you are providing a scientific approach that will give some people more confidence to switch over to electric. Your combination of personal testimony from the surveys and media spokespeople and the charts and figures is a powerful mix,” said a respondent.
Injecting your information and personal responses into the mainstream media was seen particularly important to avoid just “preaching to the converted”. Flip the Fleet is providing a powerful forum in which to debunk myths: “Every time something about EVs comes up in the media there is an overwhelming flood of negative comment [based on ignorance]. Mostly along the lines of (a) EVs cause more environmental damage than do ICE vehicles, (b) I would never buy an EV because I need greater range and (c) the batteries wear out very quickly and replacement batteries are very expensive. FtF helps provide real life data to counter the existing prejudices.”
Reaching out to the public and prospective buyers of EVs is a first step, but it might lead indirectly to the politicians and policy makers – so it gives EV owners an authoritative political voice. Flip the Fleet’s scientific data will be a force when lobbying the Government and allows owners to voice their opinions, such as: “I for one, seriously doubt if the Government target of 64K electric vehicles on the road by 2021 will be met. The South Island in particular is very poorly served by next to nothing in the fast charge department.”
While your testimony encourages us to keep going, it is mainly valuable for sharpening our work to accelerate EV uptake. Suggestions included polling recent vehicle purchasers who didn’t buy an EV and an app to automatically download data to Flip the Fleet every month. And to present data as a healthy salad rather than a seven-course banquet. “I think you can run the risk of alienating people if you give them too much data as they think that it is a tricky and complicated.” You also want us to be more active in the social networking arenas like Facebook and Twitter.
Some respondents who “neither agreed nor disagreed”, or “disagreed” that Flip the Fleet will accelerate EV uptake signalled out the bad news of the 30 kWh Leaf battery capacity fade for their misgivings. Some felt it was ill advised to have publicised the battery issue, others believed that it built Flip the Fleet’s credibility, and still others simply stated that the bad news we brought into the public attention has been damaging. Very few of the others who chose “Neither agree nor disagree”, or “disagree” thought that we were doing anything wrong. Rather, they doubted our efforts could accelerate EV uptake. For some of them, Flip the Fleet has too low a profile to convince them that it will make a substantive difference. Many of these sceptics thought that numbers and the testimony of EV owners, the early adopters, could sway the hearts and minds of the majority (see last month’s survey at https://flipthefleet.org/2018/1-click-survey-18/ for the challenges of moving the “early majority”). For example, one respondent said “While Flip the Fleet provides a very valuable service for EV owners, enthusiasts, and a few interested people, it will probably not be able to reach the masses who desperately need educating about transitioning personal transport from fossil fuel to electricity.” And another said: “Hearts and minds have to be changed. The minds might be supported by the data collected but hearts won’t.”
We agree, the heart is all-important. We were delighted by comments that Flip the Fleet gives EV owners a sense of community – if you meet another EV owner on the street, you might even discuss the latest Flip the Fleet poll. Others referred to using the data in advocacy arguments with colleagues and friends. There are increasing instances in Facebook where individuals have filtered the data in our community’s database and shown the results to others in a particular debate. Go for it! The more you show the evidence to others, the faster we’ll get the job done. We believe that owning an EV is something to be proud of and hope Flip the Fleet’s figures support that.
But mostly, we want it to be enjoyable and informative. From one respondent: “I like Flip the Fleet though. I like geeky numbers and statistics!”
Conclusions and recommendations:
In many ways, you have told us that we’re on the right track. Thanks, that keeps us keeping on.
We have also heard the following recommendations:
- Stand fast on scientific principles – present the evidence, “good” and “bad” news about EVs
- Don’t over complicate the messages: most people out there need to start with the basics
- Don’t swamp people in numbers – keep the mix of practical advice and personal experience coming
- Emphasise the main agenda: getting the messages out to those who haven’t yet considered an EV, let alone bought one
- Complement the excellent work in the mainstream media with more active use of the social media
- Continue to build Flip the Fleet’s profile, especially amongst people who have not yet switched to EVs
- Find ways to intercept the new EV owners and invite them to join Flip the Fleet
- Build more links with the other EV support teams and organisations to avoid duplication and combine strength
And we in turn have some requests of you, the main participants out there that make this all possible:
- Keep the honest testimony coming: brickbats are just as useful as strokes. Your answers are all anonymous. All points of view are welcome
- Please help us by using the data in Facebook and Twitter posts … even send them to Trump if you like!
- Please take the data into your personal submissions to politicians and policy makers – contact us (email@example.com) if you want a particular analysis and we’ll try to extract what you need if you cannot get it from the database using the Filters and Downloads to Word, Excel or email
- Suggest topics for 1-click surveys, or new EV performance measures
- Give a talk about the Flip the Fleet data in your neighbourhood and own networks! We can supply an annotated PowerPoint slide show to help and then you can overlay it with your local emphasis
- Invite your fellow-EV club members, or friends and colleagues who have an EV to sign-up to Flip the Fleet at flipthefleet.org. We are nearly 900 sign-ups so far, but by the time you slice and dice the sample to look at regional, seasonal, or EV model differences in performance, we end up losing statistical power to look for patterns. The more the merrier and the stronger our collective voice will be.
Your comments in detail:
Below is a lightly edited and re-arranged selection of many of the comments received. We have arranged the topics in order of overall importance signalled by the scores (Fig.1) except that the ‘Other category’ appears at the end.
A giant leap for car owners everywhere
“EVs are a relatively new technology on a mass scale as far as the layman is concerned and there is a lot of fuzzy information like battery life and distance anxiety” ● “People need the confidence to believe in what is a radical change in transport thinking. Good quality facts and statistics will go a long way to help people believe” ● “Creating public awareness and demystifying the EV” ● “When you shift from old and well-tried fuel-based technology to the new electric technology by investing in an EV, you need the support of a community and you need knowledge. Flip the Fleet is a key part of that support” ● “Because it will help overcome non-EV drivers’ natural hesitancy toward the idea of changing to EVs with compelling fact-based evidence based on the actual experience of those who have already gone electric” ● “It should help “demystify” electric vehicles for people with an interest in buying one, but perhaps some reluctance to commit to something new, that they don’t understand. If a group of sensible people (!!) have all bought one, maybe it’s safe”
Many people know very little about EVs
“Data-based studies of EV utility, efficiency etc are important to provide a baseline for people who are interested in getting an EV, but know very little about them” ● “Gives much more information to potential EV users” ● “Publicity! Lots of people still don’t know much, or anything, about EVs” ●”It’s helping educate dealers too – many of whom know little about EVs”
Overcoming fear and uncertainty
“Raising awareness of EVs and demystifying the hype and angst” ● “Raising awareness and removing fear of uptake” ● “Information is key for people to make such a major change in their lives that involves financial risk” ● “It provides much needed real-world information on the actual use and lifespan of EVs on NZ’s second hand market. This goes a long way to being able to answer questions and assuage particular concerns about vehicle longevity/performance etc.” ● “Because knowledge helps people become comfortable with EV” ● “EVs are a scary new technology, and on a whole people are inherently wary of such things. I think this is especially true when the current technology (ICE vehicles) is so well known and embedded into our lives” ● “As most EVs are imports, there is a fear of what is normal for the battery condition” ● “It is a forum that gives info out about EVs, alleviates fears and helps with decision making” ● “Because I believe a barrier to uptake is fear, due to lack of knowledge. When people confront the unknown, it helps to have lots of data and stories to boost their confidence” ● “Indirectly. Proper statistics and data analysis will help to combat the fear uncertainty and doubt that will be (and has been) spread by those entrenched in the fossil fuel motoring sector” ● “By collating facts on EVs to counter the fake news in the media and raise awareness” ● “There is a lot misinformation, assumptions and guesswork regarding EVs out there. What is needed is facts. FtF provide that” ● “The results should help with the fear factor for a prospective buyer” ● “Both the consumer and government agencies have access to concise data that strips away all the hyperbole evident in the EV forums” ● “There are many rumours and untruths born out of ignorance of the benefits of EV vehicles and it is only through the purely scientific tests and statistics that we can help provide through Flip the Fleet that will help dispel these myths and rumours. Many of these are voiced by the gatekeepers of the status quo” ● “Because it dispels many of the myths about range anxiety and about what is involved in owning an EV”
Allows people to buy with confidence
“With a rich database of actual, real world data on what to expect from a year/make/model you can have buy in confidence” ● “I think it is one of the things – giving real world experiences – that helps with the unknown that is seen as a blockage to new EV owners” ● “Capturing facts and experiences will guide others to make informed decisions” ● “Local analysis of e car use and battery conditions will give confidence to those considering buying electric vehicles” ● “More information to the people makes for more confident decision making” ● “It will help provide information to people thinking about getting an EV which will help convince them to uptake one” ● “Except for the latest Leaf results, yes. It gives the buyer more info and confidence” ● “The information obtained will help the confidence of potential buyers” ● “I think the level of actual information will be invaluable to buyers wanting the facts and enable them to make informed decisions” ● “For the reassurance it provides from the experience of early users of EVs” ● “I used the data available from Flip-the-fleet when deciding to purchase my Leaf. The data gave me confidence that the real-world range was suitable for my commute, and that the battery degradation with age/use was acceptable to me” ● “The more informed we are the less surprises there should be ● The knowledge gained and shared gives greater confidence to prospective EV buyers” ● “The more information available to the public, the greater confidence we have in our ability to make a good e-car buying decision” ● “A main concern for general population (and some EV owners) is what will happen to batteries over time. Flip the Fleet will help to provide information, hopefully alleviating some of the concern over the unknown” ● “Great data set that helps confidence (particularly for first time buyers) e.g. whether a potential purchase is above average SOH for its age and worth paying more and vice versa”
Making EV owners more informed advocates
“Participation increases knowledge amongst EV owners and that allows them to be more enthusiastic when talking to friends” ● “Not only do we need good, reliable information that is backed by science, we need it in the right people’s hands. As individual owners of EVs we can influence our friends and work mates but the people who meet serious vehicle buyers multiple times a day are the car sales people and by all accounts they are actively discouraging EV purchases which is deeply worrying (see this article https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1116873_car-dealers-push-buyers-away-from-electric-cars-worldwide-not-just-u-s-studies-find). This evidence comes from overseas but I suspect it’s the same here, with the notable exception of some very forward thinking car dealerships. I live in the Waikato and I have been studying TradeMe for a few months now using my self-styled “Leaf Indicator” which boils down to monthly ad-hoc reviews of the number of Leafs on sale in the Waikato. For 4-5 months now, there have been 5-8 Leafs on sale in the Waikato (right now just 4!). So 0.6% of all the Leafs on sale right now to cover 9.3% of the NZ population! This tin pot research predates the worries re the 30kWh batteries too. It just doesn’t make sense unless there is a serious case of the jitters amongst Waikato car dealers. Flip the Fleet data has an important role here too” ● “Any EV information published helps!” ● “You’re curating valuable evidence to help answer key questions that I had when considering an EV purchase, and that I still have as an EV owner” ● “I think anything that helps people “understand” EVs will lead to more EVs”
Overcoming exaggerations and misinformation on both sides
“They are also important to counter flights of fancy (both negative and positive) about EVs. At present, affordable EVs are not viable in all sectors of light vehicle transport, but they are excellent for short-range travel; less so for long-range travel. Potential users should be made aware of this, but should also be made aware that, in the medium term, EVs will penetrate much further into the general light vehicle sector” ● “Every time something about EVs comes up in the media there is an overwhelming flood of negative comment made. Mostly along the lines of (a) EVs cause more environmental damage than do ICE vehicles, (b) I would never buy an EV because I need greater range and (c) the batteries wear out very quickly and replacement batteries are very expensive. These comments are all based on ignorance. FtF helps provide real life data to counter the existing prejudices .. but it will take time” ● “The more is known about EVs, the better the uptake. The case of them is already compelling. Most of the resistance to EVs is based on a lack of information and this is where FTF comes in” ● “There is so much negativity on social media and the like about EVs – a credible scientific way to refute such nonsense is the way to change people’s perception” ● “The data collected is factual, not anecdotal. There is too much hearsay, along with disinformation caused by general ignorance in the media, but you cannot argue with the numbers generated from such a large sample of users with no hidden agenda. By giving potential EV owners this data they are better able to make informed decisions on the benefits of EV ownership and are therefore more likely to make a purchase” ● “Any EV information published helps!” ● “Presenting the facts to allow us to debunk the conspiracy theorists out there in ICE land…”
Counteracting the EV knockers
“The ‘EV knockers’ I speak to are overwhelmingly ignorant of the facts. Flip the Fleet has access to real time information from EV users. They can counter misinformation and provide education based on actual facts” ● “The data collected is factual, not anecdotal. There is too much hearsay, along with disinformation caused by general ignorance in the media, but you cannot argue with the numbers generated from such a large sample of users with no hidden agenda” ● “The ‘ev knockers’ I speak to are overwhelmingly ignorant of the facts. Flip the Fleet has access to real time information from EV users. They can counter misinformation and provide education based on actual facts. ● Real world data showing the efficacy of EVs for real people here will help overcome reluctance to believe that they can actually get the job done” ● “There is a lot of misinformation and false perceptions about electric cars amongst those people who don’t already own one. I believe it is important to have science-based data available to demonstrate the truth about such matters as battery life, reliability, maintenance cost savings and so forth. Flip the Fleet neatly fills this gap” ● “By providing regular information releases into the media articulating the experiences of their member EV owners. These releases help dispel myths and push-back from the vested interests in petrol vehicles and in “disaster” news” ● “Having true facts and not gossip and rumours will stop all the misinformation and show just how economic it is to go electric” ● “The data that Flip the Fleet is gathering is vitally important for decision makers. But even more importantly, the data and statistics gathered give Flip the Fleet the credibility and authority to speak as experts. You’ve become the go-to people for media coverage of EVs. It is fantastic that you are able to speak knowledgeably and sensibly to the media”
Data for EV owners by EV owners in NZ
“Flip the Fleet is citizen-based, it is not aligned with any company, group, government or organisation. Therefore, what you get is fact-based without any B.S. baggage!” ● “Collecting valuable data” ● “Knowledge is powerful. Flip the Fleet works tirelessly to ask good questions, and get clear and relevant answers. GIGO (garbage in garbage out) is averted by knowing what data (distance, consumption, battery degradation) are being collected, and clearly discerning this data into useable and relevant answers to questions like: How far do EV drivers travel on average? What does the health of a LEAF battery tend to look like in New Zealand over a 12 month period? etc. It is all wonderful and we are lucky to have them working so hard to collect and share good accurate information” ● “Knowledge is power” ● “Flip the Fleet is getting real data from ordinary New Zealanders. Their data is a very true representation of what your typical Kiwi can expect from their EV, rather than relying on manufacturers claims and promises based on potentially very different driving conditions to those found in New Zealand” ● “Real data in the NZ environment which shows how the beneficial it is to switch to EVs” ● “Gaining real life data from EV users across the country allows potential adopters of EV to have the information to make the right purchase decision and see the benefits of owning an EV. The research being done is helping with the promotion of EV as EV owners are getting a direct ‘buy in ‘ to their vehicle and are able to talk to non EV owners about the technology” ● “Because it provides accurate, real life NZ experience of using an EV. Scientific research – not propaganda from a car company” ● “It is a collaboration by owners/users and has real data” ● “Provides valuable actual data from EV users” ● “Very important survey information for EV car owners” ● “Shows real, local data to the public concerning EV use in New Zealand conditions” ● “By providing a platform for those who are seeking objective info to aid their decision making re buying their first EV. (Now that your data is open for all to view)” ● “It will provide reliable evidence and information gleaned from people actually driving EVs in NZ” ● “Data. real data, that helps either convince people, or helps people make educated decisions” ● “Real life stats on the number of EV owners in the country and performance of the vehicles in our environment will reassure people that EVs are a realistic option” ● “Shared information that is accurate will support the benefits of EV” ● “We need good evidence by local people in order to build necessary confidence in EV” ● “By supporting EV owners with good data and raising the profile of EVs with good analysis and publishing it” ● “By spreading scientifically valid information on a regular basis that is New Zealand specific” ● “Knowledge is power. Building a database of real results will build confidence in EV performance” ● “The citizen science approach is building a reputation for reliable data, and is not afraid to talk about issues regarding EVs. This builds confidence in a technology that is not well supported by commercial organizations in New Zealand” ● “This is independent EV owners sharing their real life experiences with EVs. With new technology it help to share experiences and help other understand and manage expectations”
Trust in objective facts and numbers
“FtF provides factual basis for the utility and applicability of EV to the motoring public of NZ” ● “Data. The more data you collect, the more accurate the work you do, and therefore the more accurate your advice, marketing, etc will be” ● “We feel more confident in moving to EV when we have objective information available” ● “Clear and credible source of info” ● “Myths will be debunked – real-world experience, off a broad information base, can be made available to all” ● “The program is data and science-based and therefore has credibility with members of the public who are considering purchasing an EV. The project cuts through the myths and misinformation about EVs” ● “Having real statistics for NZ means it’s easier to give accurate and impressive numbers to people” ● “Because it provides information about EVs and their performance” ● “Impartial objective and factual data will be a sound foundation for all those prospective EV owners who need reassurance that this new driving technology is appropriate for them. Being non-aligned to “government”, or manufacturers, or any other lobby mean the information can be trusted” ● “We are able to learn from the owners and drivers of EV vehicles rather than salesmen” ● “By dispelling any myths about electric cars and highlighting some of the other advantages of EV ownership such as low maintenance costs” ● “Improve data to prove EVs are good” ● “The perception of the public at large is that the state of batteries and their replacement cost is a serious concern for would-be buyers of EVs. Advice on obtaining the maximum life of a battery and how to drive to get the greatest endurance would be of great benefit in overcoming this inertia, along with cost analysis information on vehicles and availability and types of public chargers. As far as I know, Flip the Fleet is the only organisation collecting and collating data and making it available to the public”
Collects info from a wide demographic
“Because its citizen science status is aggregated information from a wide range of user perspectives – so you are capturing a broad cross section of needs and views. About the only common factor is they are all people who are enthusiastic about EVs. From that data source you are able to find out a lot of the hopes and fears and values of ordinary NZers re EVs, and by reflecting that back to those who might be interested in getting an EV, you answer a lot of their questions – from an audience of their peers”
The broad range of information helps
It’s good that Flip the Fleet reports all aspects of EVs: the money and the green benefits, and what it feels like to own one” ● “We need good stats on EV reliability and costs to get EVs mainstream”
Independent science rules!
“Because it provides accurate, real life NZ experience of using an EV. Scientific research – not propaganda from a car company” ● “1. it is a source of independent information. It is not pushing any particular manufacturer’s spin so it is more credible” ● “It also inspires confidence that hard data is available – both good and bad – more valuable than the word of an EVangelist apparently!” ● “People in NZ feel distanced from vehicle manufacturers and parts suppliers and having access to a body of information about how their vehicle is performing, makes them more confident that they have purchased wisely. It also helps put pressure on vehicle manufacturers to improve their product” ● “By presenting the unbiased information on EV ownership” ● “It is providing unbiased, clear, scientific data and giving consumers trustworthy information to make informed choices” ● “Need a source of reliable independent information. Not afraid of telling the hard facts i.e. issues with battery life” ● “Because their clever research captures information like battery capacity, and many other indicators” ● “Impartial quality information” ● “For me, Flip the Fleet gives me scientific evidence around how EVs behave. It’s easy and normal to say to people when they ask about you driving an EV that the experience is “just wonderful”. That is not convincing enough especially when they ask you “Why?”. Science gives the concrete answers potential EV owners seek” ● “The data you have, will provide a detailed view into NZ EV motoring, efficiencies, and running costs. This will provide future EV adopters with more information to validate their switch to electric” ● “Real data will be convincing” ● “The results of the project partly determines EV uptake, e.g. at the moment the uptake of 30kwh LEAFs is decelerated because of the data submitted. However in the long term, because of increased data and increased knowledge people can make informed decisions on whether an EV will work for them and which one would be most suitable. So overall I’m very positive about the Flip the Fleet project, great idea, but its results will partly determine uptake” ● “By providing data that is independent of sellers/manufacturers thus enabling more informed purchase decisions” ● “Source of reliable and critical scientific information” ● “It provides good scientific data not hearsay of the benefits of an EV” ● “It will give a reliable evidence base for discussions around real world performance and costs” ● “It is a place where potential purchasers can get unbiased information” ● “For those who are already interested in an EV it provide positive feedback” ● “Not enough people seriously consider an EV – until they know someone who has one – then they want independent information” ● “Especially with recent and proposed tax levies on petrol people want to know what the alternatives are” ● “EV owners and potential EV owners are information hungry. FtF provides real info!” ● “Flip the Fleet is independent of sellers of electric vehicles and government rhetoric giving prospective owners a impartial look at what can be achieved” ● “Transparency is the key to this new tech” ● “Providing more information than any car dealer could or would”
Yes, we’re biased, but our data aren’t
“Flip the Fleet provides unbiased information on the technology and performance of EVs at a time when the majority of prospective purchasers are unaware or suspicious of making a change from ICEs” ● “Because it provides independent data regarding EVs without pressure from salesmen. ● Because it is based on facts” ● “Statistics make the public more convinced” ● “People are greatly concerned about how long batteries in EVs will last. Flip; the Fleet data and analysis help people understand the likely lifetime of EV batteries. In the case of some, such as 24 kWh Leaf it is good news; some such as 30 kWh Leaf is not good news”
30 KWh batteries tested Flip the Fleet’s credibility
“We found your data very helpful in deciding to buy an EV and which sort of EV to buy. The data around the Nissan Leaf 30kWh battery was particularly helpful” ● “It has already proven and made us aware that 30 KWh battery has a problem. The research is valuable for new buyers” ● “But it can also cause some harm. Revealing the Leaf 30kwh battery degradation issue is a good thing, but it also has the potential to be overblown and to become a huge anti-EV argument “all batteries degrade within 2 years” etc.” ● “The news about the 30kWh Leaf and Nissans lack of response will have a negative effect on uptake” ● “The negative impact of the Nissan Leaf 30Kwh battery publicity” ● “As with the 30Kwh leaf research, as a citizen science project Flip the Fleet has the potential to retard EV uptake as well” ● “The information gathered will reassure potential buyers of the benefit of EVs. In addition the honesty of highlighting the issues with the 30KW battery reassures people that Flip the Fleet can be trusted” ● “Flip the Fleet revealed the bad news regarding the 30kw battery issue which might damage EV uptake to those sitting on the fence. However the openness and quality of data in general will be reassuring that there is more than hype thus improving uptake. A plus and a minus ends up as neutral” ● “The public statements about poor battery performance of the Nissan leaf 30kwh model has been putting people off them. This was ill-advised and based on poor information quality” ● “Providing evidence of the problems with 30kwh Nissan Leafs, and the resulting publicity, has slowed sales of this model and made people wary of buying Leafs at least and possibly other EVs as well. Still great that FTF did this work and published it” ● “The rapid 30kWh degradation is off putting – particularly when the message is repeated second hand without emphasizing that it is only one model that has this feature. Without FtF we wouldn’t know about this issue” ● “Few who have not already got an EV have even heard of Flip the Fleet. And whatever benefits it provides to those looking to purchase an EV are undone by the actual findings about the accelerated degradation of 30kWh Leafs, I suspect, as people are now holding off on purchasing”
Real New Zealand evidence; proof of fit to our neighbourhood
“Real data in the NZ environment which shows how the beneficial it is to switch to EVs” ● “It is important for prospective buyers to have access to reliable, documented information, to counter all the stories that people tell you when you are thinking about buying, or have already purchased. The general driving public is very ignorant of the facts” ● “Clear and credible source of info” ● “The more accurate knowledge people have the more confidence they will to purchase” ● “Good data will drive behaviour change”
Education potential buyers in a confusing and complex new world
“It educates the public about a paradigm shift for the environment and motoring alike” ● “Gives much more information to potential EV users” ● “People are naturally suspicious of new technologies and buying a car or successive cars, after buying a house, is the most expensive item of expenditure in most families. Partly you are making them more visible, but also you are providing a scientific approach that will give some people, but not all people, more confidence to switch over to electric. Your combination of personal testimony from the surveys and media spokespeople and the charts and figures is a powerful mix” ● “The advice they have available is vital in helping us to make the decision to go EV. They have also provided fantastic advice on how to get the most from our EV and sort issues. The information available is also really helpful when people ask us about EVs” ● “It provides statistical substantiation of the overall performance of EVs in NZ from a user-based perspective. It also gives me personally running performance information that I can use in my conversations with other potential EVers” ● “With the data gained it will help people understand what it is like to drive and operate an electric car, and what you save and what the greenhouse effect is” ● “By raising the general awareness of EVs and providing data which people can use to make educated decisions around choosing EVs” ● “The resources available on the website which I link to a lot when providing information to potential EV owners who ask questions on the different Facebook EV groups I am a member of” ● “Folk are naturally cautious and suspicious of new technology for such a big purchase. The more real life info people get, the more they will realise how viable an option EV is”
Gathering data will speed up development
“Data enables science. Science enables informed decision making” ● “Because it will provide real data about EVs in New Zealand conditions” ● “One of the issues that would help EV sales is reduced servicing time and costs, but I suspect this data will take quite a long time to collect. It currently doesn’t feature much in EV promotions”
Gives owners peace of mind on technical issues
“It provides unbiased information about EVs. This has been very useful in managing to use the EV efficiently. It has also significantly reduced my concerns about some of the practical aspects of using an EV” ● “It can give people some peace of mind around batteries and EV running/maintenance costs, and also reliability” ● “Because the data collected will help potential buyers alleviate anxiety about the new technology” ● “It helps us with simple to digest data and graphics and regular press releases” ● “The website acts to reassure potential purchasers of the merits of EV ownership” ● “It provides a supporting environment for existing owners and reaffirms their decision to buy EV; the existing ownership base are the best evangelists for EV ownership, so if they feel comfortable in their purchase that interest and enthusiasm will be passed on to potential buyers”
Owners teaching owners through social media
“There is the beginnings of people using the data to start answering debates or questions from other EV owners on Facebook. We need more of that – more people actually speaking out from the database so we all become better advocates” ● “The case of the owner who promoted the life of their Leaf battery by keeping it at less than 40% charge was really interesting, and a clue for us all” [this will be referring to the post at: https://flipthefleet.org/2018/early-adopters-as-teachers-a-case-of-extraordinary-care-of-a-leaf-battery/]
It’s more than just about numbers: we are showing what it’s like to own an EV
“The main ‘disadvantage’ with (100%) EVs is the range. The data that is collected and especially the comments will help those who are unsure from this point of view, to see that charging is so simple, with plentiful places to do so” ● “More information will help those umming and ahhing to make a final decision. I expect the results to be positive” ● “The 1-click surveys show the personal dimensions behind the numbers story”
Is Flip the Fleet preaching to the converted?
“Flip the Fleet is directed mainly at people who already own an EV so it is, in a sense, preaching to the converted” ● “In our experience, it’s people who already own EVs who join Flip the Fleet, not vice versa” ● “I suspect that the people interested with Flip the Fleet are the one already convinced by EVs”
Getting the messages out to the non-converted is the key benefit of Flip the Fleet
“The research being done is helping with the promotion of EV as EV owners are getting a direct ‘buy in ‘ to their vehicle and are able to talk to non EV owners about the technology” ● “By giving potential EV owners this data they are better able to make informed decisions on the benefits of EV ownership and are therefore more likely to make a purchase” ● “The more the general public and politicians learn about EVs and their comparative merits, the more logical the switch to EVs will become to them” ● “Participation increases knowledge amongst EV owners and allows them to be more enthusiastic when talking to friends” ● “It is one of the factors that will provide information and propaganda to encourage the adoption of EVs” ● “The more people spreading the word the better – especially when they have actual data” ● “Data from Flip the Fleet are now being used by a wide variety of organisations in New Zealand. This is particularly important with the government organisations because of their influence on the future uptake and promotion of EVs in New Zealand” ● “Because unless you are actually interested in EVs, you won’t bother to read up on all the articles about it. I’ve found from people I talk to about my having an EV that every one of them is very ignorant about how an EV works and isn’t overly interested”
Flip the Fleet is EV HQ in NZ
“Most importantly, Flip the Fleet is a contact point for people to find out about EVs and how they really work in New Zealand. Flip the Fleet seems to have become a default contact for the media about EVs. The media is not always particularly interested in the gory details of the statistics that are being collected, but nevertheless those statistics and the analysis that go with them provide the legitimacy for your team to talk about EVs in the public sphere” ● “Focal point for lobbying, submissions etc.” ● “Because you are very smart, altruistic people who have already done a lot with the few resources that you have” ● “It seems the most well-known and informative site” ● “Data collected here will provide answers to questions about the use of EV vehicles. What are the costs of owning such vehicles, how do they perform, what are the drawbacks and what are the advantages” ● “Accurate information on “new” technology as the BEV is essential to make informed decisions on purchasing and running the cars. FTF gives great on hand statistical information that would take an individual an enormous amount of time to decipher off forums and internet” ● “It’s a NEW ZEALAND based website that comes up when you search EVs. It provides useful and helpful information and support for both potential and current EV owners”
It raises awareness and visibility of EVs
“By raising the general awareness of EVs and providing data which people can use to make educated decisions around choosing EVs” ● “The more people that know about the benefits of EV, the better. It is encouraging to see so many people making the decision to go electric. This is no doubt because of the interest generated by social and other media. I am often approached by people who see my car and want to know all about it” ● “The more unbiased publicity that is generated about EVs the better. Once the idea of an EV penetrates the consciousness people will start to take an interest” ● “Awareness in general and numbers to back the facts that’s EVs are a better alternative” ● “Public awareness will be enhanced” ● “By publishing news items on a regular basis it brings the issue of EVs to the public’s attention” ● “Bring EV awareness” ● “More awareness of EVs to the general public” ● “It promotes the profile of EVs” ● “Flip the Fleet’s advocacy of them in the media ensures that EVs get a higher profile than they would otherwise have” ● “Raising public awareness as regards transport electrification” ● “By increasing overall awareness of EVs”
Confidence in the future of EVs in NZ
“The actual data provides information that the geeks amongst us need to understand how EVs are used, and how they perform. All that critical stuff that ensures our infrastructure will be able to cope with a rapidly increasing EV population” ● “Because the information obtained from Current EV owners can help improve the production of future EVs” ● “We feel more confident in moving to EV when we have objective information available” ● “Future EV buyers want proof that their investment is a wise one. Having access to real-world, NZ based EV fleet data will help them in making the decision – and data will assist in dispelling the seemingly persistent myths about EVs” ● “People are naturally cautious about adopting new technology. One of the barriers to this is having robust and independent information to enable decisions to be made. Whilst everyone wants to adopt the new technology and understands that this is the way things are heading, when to make the change is the key issue. Rumours and unfounded information slows the uptake of new technology. The other important aspect is to ensure that manufacturers back up their electric vehicles not just in the country of origin but also in NZ. The more data collected the more confidence people will gain in the advantages of EV ownership” ● “To be honest we are all still learning how well these cars will perform”
Flip the Fleet on the world stage
“The fact that NZ expertise is respected overseas shows we are an important part of world EV update” ● “The 30 kWh battery alert clearly hit the world stage – and other countries have started polling EV owners about batteries as a result” [we have also had people from UK, Sweden, Spain and USA try to sign up to Flip the Fleet]
Matching EV choice to buyers’ needs
“Gaining real life data from EV users across the country allows potential adopters of EV to have the information to make the right purchase decision and see the benefits of owning an EV” ● “we tend to get lost in the bigger battle – to get more people to buy EVs of any sort. FtF is helping buyers at a different level – to select the best model for their needs, and the best car of a model for price”
Good use of media to inform the public
“Flip the Fleet gets good publicity from print media which will keep people interested, particularly if they are marginally interested already” ● “Flip the Fleet gets good publicity from print media which will keep people interested particularly if they are marginally interested already” ● “The information received will be collated and this would then show benefits of driving EVs and the savings” ● “It helps provide compelling knowledge bites and graphics that can be used to sell the story” ● “Able to give fact-based insights about owning an EV” ● “I am confident that the data gathered & its interpretation by Flip the Fleet are accurate & representative of the NZ EV experience. My personal experience is very positive & seems to be typical of most. Information from Flip the Fleet appears to reach a large audience via popular media as well as target audiences like government agencies & vehicle manufacturers. Surely if this accurate, good news pervades it will accelerate EV uptake in NZ” ● “By collecting and analysing accurate data to inform a wide variety of audiences” ● “Because it seeks an evidence-based approach to evaluate EV experiences and statistics, and Henrik presents this clearly to media” ● “As more information is collected from EV owners and published, it will inspire others who are not quite sure about taking the final step to EV ownership” ● “FTF has an ongoing media presence and I think NZ will value locally sourced information/experience about real world EV use”
Generates discussion on EVs
“Flip the Fleet data and analysis appear regularly in the media, and every time something is published it generates discussion. In my experience those discussions get people thinking about EVs as a viable option. Without that ‘conversation starter’ I really think many people wouldn’t even consider an EV because it’s too much of an unknown, and in many cases not even on their radar” ● “EVs take a change in perspective; perceived limited range, more thought and planning around longer journeys, the idea of charging at home, etc.” ● “Provides interesting and informative data of why it is good to drive an EV. Also gets the community talking about things EV” ● “Gets people talking about it”
Flip the Fleet is gaining strength
“Citizen science has great attraction now. The data you’re gathering is getting stronger with each month and with each sign-up. The media are on to it now – they know Flip the Fleet is reliable. All these things add momentum but the greatest is word of mouth, I believe. People who are recent adopters tell their mates about Flip the Fleet and that provides encouragement to non-believers to make the switch. Lots of people are wary of being found out in the lunatic fringe, so they wait until things become more mainstream and safe. That’s what Flip the Fleet does”
Gives EV owners a sense of family
“Forming a supportive EV community” ● “Great feeling of community meaning people feel more welcome and in turn will talk with their friends and family about EVs” ● “Flip the Fleet provides a form of engagement for new and existing EV owners to interact with their vehicle and receive detailed information about the benefits it provides the individual, while providing that information to Flip the Fleet allows for more general statistics to be presented to the public” ● “It helps create a sense of community building a momentum, together” ● “The system creates a sense of community, supported by objective independent measurement and collation of the data”
Gives EV owners a separate voice from ICE owners
“It’s also a bit of a battle against the fossil-fuel industry and its cosy relationship with the car industry and car service businesses. Like with climate change and tobacco, the vested interests just have to sow enough seeds of doubt to slow up the change by a lot – they can’t and won’t win the argument in the longer run, but they can make their business last a lot longer by misinformation. Similarly some EV owners exaggerate benefits and discount risks either deliberately as a way to counteract the other side) or subconsciously (we are a passionate bunch). The EV numbers can speak for themselves, but the naysayers and current benefactors sure can poke sticks in the spokes. Flip the Fleet is one of the very few arbiters in the middle and provided they squarely admit the downsides unbiased (like the 30 kWh battery fiasco), then buyers will trust them” ● “It is a collaboration by owners/users and has real data” ● “People in NZ feel distanced from vehicle manufacturers and parts suppliers and having access to a body of information about how their vehicle is performing, makes them more confident that they have purchased wisely. It also helps put pressure on vehicle manufacturers to improve their product”
Good for business
“It allows evidence-based decision making which is required for business uptake”
Promoting care for the environment
“Humanity and our worlds environment need the right decisions” ● “Because it is a great format for discovering what EVs can do for the future of motoring and more importantly the future of planet Earth” ● “Humanity and our world’s environment need the right decisions” ● “By providing statistics on how much CO2 and money can be saved by switching to electric cars” ● “Timing in any endeavour is critical, so having had a government in denial of Climate Change for so long, there is now a sense of urgency for change and Flip the Fleet allows ordinary people to make a positive contribution from our consumer choices” ● “It has established a good profile for all sorts of questions relating to EVs. It puts the facts out there to inform EV owners and the rest of the nation about the environmental benefits of owning an EV, the technology and what can be done for a more sustainable future”
Benefits for owners and planet
“People need real information as to the benefits of owning an EV car as well as the benefits to the environment” ● “Because Flip the Fleet will increase knowledge of the actual costs, benefits etc of owning an EV”
Helps to convert people from ICE to EV
“Shifts people from petrol and diesel to electric” ● “It provides useful data for people and organizations considering EV adoption” ● “The advice they have available is vital in helping us to make the decision to go EV. They have also provided fantastic advice on how to get the most from our EV and sort issues. The information available is also really helpful when people ask us about EVs” ● “Because it’s helping to bring the concept of non-petrol powered vehicles to the public consciousness” ● “I agree that Flip the Fleet will help accelerate EV uptake in NZ because it gives unbiased data from actual day to day running of EV cars” ● “It also highlights the cost saving and lack of maintenance of EV vehicles” ● “It will improve knowledge on EV running costs and reliability so giving confidence to any future EV owners about moving away from conventional transport” ● “Having Flip the Fleet gives people the opportunity to see what others that have already purchased an electric vehicle share data and comments from their experiences of ownership showing the advantage of ownership” ● “Because for some people reliable data from real world NZ drivers will give them the information they can trust to make the leap” ● “A better question: has Flip the Fleet accelerated NZ knowledge of EVs – and the answer is a resounding yes” ● “There are many reasons why people buy cars, but they all have one thing in common – it’s a big purchase so they don’t want to get it wrong. We all drive petrol cars and unless we are buying our first one, we can pretty much predict how they will behave. But this isn’t the case with EVs so an EV purchase will always be risky to those that don’t already own one. So to give people that confidence so they take the leap, we need a lot of good information and this is where Flip the Fleet comes in” ● “Evidence-based decision making is the benchmark for uptake of EVs by organizations. The more organizations in New Zealand that buy and use EVs, the greater the supply for the New Zealand market which is strongly driven by second-hand sales” ● “As more information is collected from EV owners and published, it will inspire others who are not quite sure about taking the final step to EV ownership”
Helpful for government lobbying
“It is bringing together the thoughts and facts of current owners and these facts are being used in a positive way to influence governments and future EV owners” ● “It gives a robust data set and evidence base that empowers the EV community and helps with any lobbying we might need to do” ● “The more accurate information there is about EV performance in N Z conditions the better case we can make for Government support and promotion”
Flip the Fleet’s shortcomings
“I think you can run the risk of alienating people if you give them too much data as they think that it is a tricky and complicated” ● “Flip the Fleet provides real life data on using EVs in NZ BUT I don’t think this will change the EV uptake. Hearts and minds have to be changed. The minds might be supported by the data collected but hearts won’t” ● “FtF‘s activities have given EVs more exposure in the general media, which might make more people aware of EVs. At the same time, however, people who were already giving EVs consideration may have been made aware that there are pitfalls; e.g. with the Nissan Leaf which is far and away the most popular model” ● “I don’t think there is sufficient knowledge of what Flip the Fleet is doing in the wider community to affect uptake by those who weren’t already interested in the change” ● “Flip the Fleet is primarily interacting with current owners, many of whom are enthusiasts (of EVs), but to accelerate the uptake of EVs it is necessary to persuade the people that currently own ICE vehicles. The information gathered by Flip-the-fleet will be of some value, but there are a few problems that need to be addressed, and these include the high battery cost, the range, recharging, and future taxation” ● “The data collection that Flip the Fleet undertakes is a scientific process and as with any scientific process, the results arrived at should be evaluated in a scientific way and should be uninfluenced by personal sentiment. Thus, whether or not EV uptake will be accelerated, will depend upon the results, both negative and positive, of the scientific process. You can’t pre-guess the results of a scientific process. That is why I neither agree nor disagree” ● “Come on – this is just sideline activity in the early days – the true determinants of widespread uptake will come when automakers start really trying to sell EVs (over ICVE) and the “powers that be” drive widespread EV Public Charging infrastructure” ● “However the lack of a proper public charging infrastructure and the high cost of new electric vehicles will delay uptake. I for one, seriously doubt if the Government target of 64K electric vehicles on the road by 2021 will be met. The South Island in particular is very poorly served by next to nothing in the fast charge department” ● “Generally, people take little notice of science. ● Most people don’t really know what FTF is about” ● “If the general public would make decisions about transport based on data & facts, I would agree with your statement. Unfortunately, most people still make those decisions based on recommendations from friends, colleagues & media or simply their personal preferences or ‘gut feeling’. This is not going to change soon – so, while I personally appreciate what FlipTheFleet is doing (to be able to back my arguments with facts), I don’t think it will influence the NZ public a lot … pump prices are way more influential, in orders of magnitudes” ● “The problem for Flip the Fleet is that it is an advocacy project and its contributors have a strong advocacy/evangelical position. Consequently the publications of Flip the Fleet reflect that attitude and it’s difficult for the wider public to take them seriously” ● “Too many emails” ● “I think the issue of battery life in the Leaf was not well handled so that, on the basis of not convincing evidence (e.g. were the methods for measuring battery life appropriate for the vehicle concerned?) Overall, the publicity appeared like an attack on the integrity of electric vehicles” ● “A lot of people (EV owners) I talk to, don’t even know about FTF, so how should ICE people know about it?” ● “It is quite complicated understanding what you do” ● “I didn’t say “strongly agree” because I think that there are far more factors that influence EV uptake than the statistics that you supply, though of course they are important too” [the respondent chose ‘agree’]
Flip the Fleet is fun
“I like Flip the Fleet, I like geeky numbers and statistics! ● And a big THANKS for all your hard work!!!”
Lovin’ the free online data service
“Having a free online service where you can keep track and monitor a car’s statistics is important” ● “It is a good forum to compare data from around NZ and to see one’s own data over time” ● “The sharing of data regarding the day to day performance and charging informs and educates the contributors and other interested parties”
Logging the data
Lowering the effort to log the data would be great. Anyway to get an app like LeafSpy that collects all trips and sends a monthly summary?” ● “While the first movers will be keen to log and record all the data, the mainstream populace will not care about logging the detail. Just like PlugShare, the enthusiasts will record their activity. Others will just want to get on with living life” ● “Ordinary people don’t care about data or research”
The good and the bad
“There is a dearth of information on the ownership experience in NZ and FlipTheFleet is filling this gap. The data collected here would help consumers make informed choices. However, since this is a research project first, if it uncovers data that is damaging to EV uptake (like with Nissan Leaf 30 KWh), that information should be published too. Such results may slow down EV uptake in the short term but overall it pushes the overall industry forward” ● “The recent engagement with media” ● “LEAF battery problems well publicised and may increase membership following the 30kWh battery issue. Although, actually this might have put some people off electric cars, it raised them in a public sphere which at least means that more people were thinking about them” ● “It will inform the debate, which will help in the long run, but bringing the 30 kWh Leaf issue to fore has probably slowed sales in the short term and spooked many who aren’t aware of the distinctions between models, just that some EVs are having serious issues. It has to be raised of course, but it’s not necessarily increasing the uptake. It is better than it not being raised though, and a bigger backlash coming later on. Flip the Fleet is a great project and very important, but about more than promotion” ● “I think most people have other objections to adoptions which are more important than battery degradation. For example high initial cost – limited range etc. Flip the Fleet will be more valuable for phase existing owners” ● “I Agree, rather than Strongly Agree, because not all information that is being collected is positive. The 30Kwh Leaf battery issue is an obvious example. However knowledge is power – although it doesn’t drive the car! – and good information leads to good decisions. I have no doubt that people uses FtF as a source of that good information” ● “Too complicated working a Leaf Spy and trying to read Japanese dashboard”
Co-ordinating team efforts
“PlugShare is a huge help [for overcoming range anxiety]” ● “Chargenet and BetterNZ Trust, Drive Electric are doing great work too. Maybe there is opportunity in co-ordinating and helping each other rather than duplicating each other’s work?”
Flip the what?
“I am very happy to take part in Flip the Fleet but I think that New EV owners are unlikely to be aware of it at the time they decide to buy an EV” ● “Flip the Fleet provides the evidence on the reliability and range of EVs in New Zealand. However I do not know whether these data reach anyone except EV or PHEV owners currently” ● “There is no way all NZ EV or LEAF owners can automatically be invited to join ‘Flip the Fleet‘. I only stumbled across it by accident – during a Google search for LEAF information. I don’t know what % of LEAF or EV owners have joined, but I suspect those who have not joined are “don’t know about it” rather than “can’t be bothered”. I would certainly spread the word to other EV owners, but regrettably have met only two; my son and one other.”
Some reasons why respondents neither agree nor disagree that Flip the Fleet is increasing uptake
“While I believe it might play a small role it is a very small aspect in the big picture” ● “I think most EV owners would sign up to Flip the Fleet after purchasing their vehicle, not being aware of it beforehand” ● “I believe that it will be an expanding vehicle fleet in terms of models available and lower cost second hand vehicles that will be the main driver of electric vehicle. Along with the vehicle numbers will come the a associated infrastructure and businesses specialising in servicing and refurbishing the battery packs which will remove any remaining stigma about EV ownership” ● “I think there are lots of other things that will do it, such as word of mouth from exiting EV users, Nissan Leaf Facebook forum etc.” ● “I believe it’s useful for existing owners but don’t think it will increase uptake of EVs” ● “Flip the Fleet promotes EV use, which is expected to help accelerate uptake” ● “However, it’s also published some enlightening data that cast a shadow on an aspect of EVs that newcomers are most worried about i.e. batteries. This is expected to decelerate uptake. That can’t be helped – there is a moral obligation to publish the data, regardless of whether it’s good or bad for uptake” ● “Flip the Fleet is unknown to most, even to people that already drive an EV” ● “There should be much more awareness of it, for example via car dealers and possibly as flyer that is sent to car owners with their renewal for license” ● “I’m not certain whether information gathered is reaching non EV owners, even though Flip the Fleet have media coverage are non EV owners reading the media releases” ● “I think EV uptake is related to emotions rather than science, and the factors that influence people to buy one aren’t affected by the excellent research that you are carrying out” ● “Also it’s hard for me to tell since I’m an owner and contribute to Flip the Fleet but I’m not sure how well-recognised you are, outside of the current owner community. I’ve heard about you on radio, in Consumer, on TV. Many people never watch TV news etc, so I wonder about how you penetrate the Facebook generation when their news feeds are determined largely by what they’ve looked at previously” ● “Currently the “”citizen science”” shows disadvantageous battery longevity for Nissan Leaf 2016 30kW versions. It is possible this public knowledge will prove to be a disincentive for people to switch to EV cars” ● “I don’t see how this can be used to increase EV uptake” ● “FtF will help by providing unbiased data on EV which will assist buying decisions either way – not convinced this will accelerate!” ● “Too soon. Results still evolving – good or bad” ● Other, stronger factors will motivate public to go EV. e.g. Environmental deterioration – [Temperature, weather, rising sea levels, etc].”
When they still buy an ICE
“From the point of increasing sales of EVs, it would be useful to interact with recent vehicle purchasers and ask them why they didn’t buy an EV. That would better identify the issues that need to be addressed” ● “While Flip the Fleet provides a very valuable service for EV owners, enthusiasts, and a few interested people, it will probably not be able to reach the masses who desperately need educating about transitioning personal transport from fossil fuel to electricity. A further acceleration of EV uptake will most likely require monetary incentives (like petrol price hikes and feebate schemes) and government support. The inertia and indifference of a large part of the population is just too great” ● “People are influenced more by the strong advertising for SUV’s and other vehicles with heat engines in them”
What should we ask the members next?
Please suggest questions to ask of your fellow EV owners in future 1-click surveys – email your requests to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dima Ivanov, Daniel Myall, Rebecca Hayter, Henrik Moller ands Monica Peters
30 May 2018