Many Americans are still hesitant of switching to electric vehicles despite the administration’s push to move to climate-friendly cars, according to a new survey.

About 46 percent of Americans said they are unlikely to purchase an electric vehicle, according to a poll released Tuesday by the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago (EPIC) and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

This is largely unchanged from when the poll was conducted last year, when 47 percent said they were unlikely to purchase an electric vehicle. Nearly 60 percent of respondents said they would avoid the transition due to the high cost, per the survey.

When asked to choose whether they would rather purchase a more-expensive American electric vehicle or a less-expensive Chinese one, the poll found the majority of respondents chose the locally made vehicle. The poll also noted that this was true even when the American vehicle cost $500, $1,000, $2,000 or $5,000 more than a car from China.

About 42 percent of Americans in the poll said they would be somewhat likely to purchase an electric vehicle. It also found that about six in 10 Americans cited saving money on gas and vehicle maintenance as a reason they would purchase an electric vehicle.

President Biden has been pushing for a larger shift to electric vehicles. The administration published a new rule earlier this year that could make a significant share of the new vehicle market electric or hybrid by 2032.

The EPIC/AP-NORC poll was conducted from March 26 – April 10 among 6,265 adults through online and telephone interviews. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.7 percentage points.

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Areas of Focus: Public Opinion on Energy & Climate
Public Opinion on Energy & Climate
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