By Drew Johnson
Thursday, Mar 21st, 2013 @ 3:02 pm
 
A new report finds that nearly a third of electric vehicle owners in Japan would not purchase another EV, highlighting the challenges facing the technology the world over.
According to a report published by research firm McKinsey and Co., about one in three EV owners in Japan say they would not purchase another electrically powered vehicle. Respondents said they felt "seduced" by allure of electric vehicle technology, but were let down by high electric bills and general lack of charging infrastructure.

"Until prices drop to the point where the level of mass-market uptake stimulates infrastructure development, manufacturers must learn how to build customer loyalty to broaden the market for EVs," study authors Axel Krieger, Philipp Radtke and Yoshi Takanuki wrote in the report.

Dave Sullivan, manager of product analysis at AutoPacific Inc., says that EV owners have also grown wary of getting stuck with an outdated model.

"EVs are looked at more like a piece of technology and they don't age well," Sullivan told The Detroit News. "Mobile phones get obsolete quickly and EVs appear to suffer a similar fate, leaving consumers feeling like they have tape deck when all of the cool kids have an iPod."

Although McKinsey's study focused on the Japanese market, the same troubles discovered in the report could be dogging worldwide EV sales. In the United States, only about 50,000 electric vehicle have been sold, representing just a fraction of overall sales. EV sales have also failed to take of in Europe.