Consumer awareness of new EV brands is low but not a barrier to buying used, finds eBay Motors Group research

Two in three car buyers do not recognise the names of the plethora of new electric car brands, even though some are already on sale in the UK.

However, this lack of awareness is not necessarily a barrier to purchasing, with a third saying they would consider buying a used car from a new marque, compared to just over a quarter who would buy new.

The latest Consumer Insight Panel research from eBay Motors Group asked 2,000 buyers if they had heard of 10 new EV car brands from the US and China.

The highest levels of awareness were for Chery (16%), Fisker (11%) Rivian (9%), Lucid Motors (8%) and Nio (7%), all of which are yet to arrive in the UK.

But awareness of brands already on sale here was lower with just 6% of respondents having heard of BYD and only 4% recognising GWM Ora, even though both have been on sale for several months.

Other brands with low awareness included Lynk & Co (5%), Aiways (4%) and Zeekr (3%).

With many of the new EV makers coming from China, a third of all buyers say they would be confident buying a car from a Chinese brand, the most likely customers being men and those aged under 45.

“The rollout of new EV brands from the US and China is set to accelerate but our research shows just how low consumer awareness is of many of them, even those currently on sale here,” said Lucy Tugby, Marketing Director of eBay Motors Group.

“However, as we’ve seen from the growing popularity of Korean brands which launched in the 1990s and the successful introduction of Dacia a decade ago, buyers become increasingly receptive to new brands that deliver on affordability and offer good customer buying experiences.

“Awareness of many of these new EV brands may be low today but buyers are not ruling them out, with our data showing an appetite for consideration once models enter the used market, especially among younger buyers. Consideration is likely to only grow in future,” said Tugby.