Safety concerns biggest deterrent for people to buy EVs, survey shows-CnEVPost

Electric vehicles (EVs) are one of the most discussed topics in China today, and although their penetration rate has been rising rapidly, it is only about 10 percent. So what are the factors that keep the vast majority of consumers from choosing to buy an EV? A new survey provides part of the answer.

A poll conducted by Sina Auto earlier this month showed that safety concerns are the biggest deterrent for Chinese customers to buy an electric car, followed by range concerns.

The poll drew 16,000 participants, with 9,246 saying they were worried about safety, or 58 percent. A total of 3,981 people said they were worried about range, or 25 percent.

Fewer people expressed concerns about infrastructure, value retention and electromagnetic radiation, with a maximum of 4.8 percent.

This is the automatically translated version of the poll page:

Safety concerns biggest deterrent for people to buy EVs, survey shows-CnEVPost

Although fuel cars can also catch fire, the more frequent occurrence of such accidents with electric vehicles has many people worried about safety.

According to market research firm GGII, there were 34 electric vehicle fire accidents in China from January to May 2021, an increase of 20 accidents from the same period last year.

April was the month with the highest number of such accidents at 10. As temperatures rise, severe weather such as heat and exposure to the sun can affect the safety of electric vehicles.

The area with the highest incidence of electric vehicle fire accidents is new energy passenger cars, with 27 fire accidents from January to May, accounting for 79 percent of the total.

From January to May, pure electric vehicles continue to be the ones with the largest percentage of fire accidents.

From the state of the vehicle at the time of the accident, the use of the state of the fire is 20, accounting for 59 percent.

The next is the charging state in 10 fires, accounting for 29 percent. There were 4 fires in the resting state, accounting for 12 percent.

The percentage of electric vehicle fires while charging is about 28 percent, while the percentage of fires while sitting is 38 percent, said Wei Zhongbao, a professor at the Beijing Institute of Technology, adding that this is quite surprising.

"Electric vehicle fires in the charging state are mainly related to the charging pile, including the charging pile control strategy and the mismatch between the system and the vehicle," Wei said.

There is no uniform explanation in the industry for electric vehicles catching fire in a resting condition, and damage to the power battery during long-term service is certainly a significant contributing factor, he claims.

He believes that poor monitoring and protection strategies for power batteries, as well as imprecision, can also lead to accidents with power battery systems in a parked state.

Nearly 40% of EV fires occur while sitting, says expert