Jakarta. One in three people in Southeast Asia admit they consider making the switch to electric cars, a study by Frost & Sullivan has revealed.
The research, sponsored by Japanese carmaker Nissan, revealed 37 percent of prospective car buyers in the region may end up buying an electric one.
Survey respondents from the Philippines, Thailand and Indonesia are the most interested in electric motor-powered cars.
According to the study, with the right incentives and policies, electric cars could be the next big thing in the region.
"Two-thirds of customers in Asean countries say they're still worried about safety and finding charging stations for their electric cars," Nissan revealed the results of the study in a statement on Tuesday (06/02).
"But they don't see price as an obstacle. They're prepared to pay more for electric cars," the study said.
The research also recommends policies to be taken by governments wanting to promote the use of electric cars.
"75 percent of respondents say they will buy electric cars if they don't have to pay tax, 70 percent say they will be even more enthusiastic about the prospect if charging stations are made available in their apartment complexes and 56 percent say they will abandon conventional cars altogether if there's a priority lane for electric cars on the streets of their city," the study said.
However, the study also revealed a few factors that make Southeast Asian customers reluctant to switch to electric cars.
"They're worried the cars will run out of charge before they reach their destination. That's their main concern. The government and carmakers need to work together to ease it," the study said.
"Southeast Asians consider the government plays a very important role in promoting electric vehicles," Nissan's senior vice president Yutaka Sanada said in the company's statement.
The Japanese carmaker says it has sold more than 300,000 of its Nissan LEAF electric cars all over the world and not a single one of them has experienced safety issues.
"In reality the demand for electric cars today is very high. Figures sometimes don't tell the whole story. If governments and carmakers can assure customers that electric cars are safe and won't run out of power mid-journey, the market can grow very large indeed," Frost & Sullivan's senior vice president Vivek Vaidya said.