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Voters are bullish on electric vehicles, but there's a partisan gap

A newly released poll shows partisan differences over electric vehicles but nonetheless has bullish data for those excited about rapid expansion of what's still a niche market.

Data: Climate Nexus poll conducted April 16-17, 2019 among 1,939 registered U.S. voters; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

By the numbers: 44% of voters plan to go electric when they replace their wheels in the next 5 years, including over half of Democrats.

Why it matters: EVs are growing fast, but cars with a plug are still in the low single digits of total U.S. car sales.

  • We'll have to wait and see how many of those "likely" answers actually translate into actual new sales, but it's still a sign of strong consumer interest.

The intrigue: Another big takeaway is that incentives matter. Strong majorities, including 71% of Republicans, say a $7,500 tax credit would increase their likelihood of going electric.

  • That's a hot topic now because both Tesla and GM have reached the 200,000 vehicles per manufacturer cap on the $7,500 credit.
  • Bipartisan bills in both chambers would expand the program, but the White House is not pro-EV.

Who they are: The survey was conducted by the communications group Climate Nexus and climate programs at Yale and George Mason universities.

But, but, but: Separate polling released yesterday by Morning Consult highlights barriers to EV adoption:

  • "The key roadblocks to potential increased sales include concern over the potential unavailability of or distance to charging stations (62 percent said this would make them less likely to consider an electric vehicle) and high upfront costs (60 percent)."

Go deeper: Billion-dollar bets on electric vehicles await payoff