According to new research commissioned by the Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI), 82% of drivers feel they don’t know enough about electric vehicles to wave goodbye to their petrol/diesel vehicle. Two thirds (66%) said they wouldn’t know where to find a charging point and nearly a third say they will never change to electric.
The IMI research also identified the lack of knowledge about the expertise and training required to service and maintain electric vehicles. The body found that 9 in 10 drivers are not aware of the current training necessary for technicians to safely work on an electrified vehicle. Worryingly, over half (59%) of respondents said they would be confident to perform basic maintenance tasks on an electric vehicle themselves.
Steve Nash, Chief Executive at the IMI, told Autotechnician:
“The IMI is currently lobbying for a Licence to Practise for vehicle technicians working on Electric and Hybrid vehicles. Without regulation and a minimum training standard, there are significant safety risks for technicians who may not have any form of training before coming into contact with high- voltage vehicles. We have a handful of significant meetings in the coming months between the IMI and key members of Parliament, and we hope to gather further momentum this year.
“The motor industry deserves recognition for their individual training and skills when it comes to working on such advanced technology. The licensing scheme would provide that credibility, as well as offering other benefits to the individual technician who are trained and qualified to work on low-emission vehicles. Benefits to the individual include the fact that businesses would be keen to recruit them to allow the business to service and maintain these vehicles. We’ve seen lately that the appetite for electric and hybrid vehicles shows no sign of slowing down – there has been an increase of 35% in sales this year.”