Want to buy an EV? Supply chain challenges persist amid gas price spikes

With gas prices spiking in Metro Vancouver once again, a new report suggests the alternative many people are considering continues to be a struggle, too.

The BC Hydro report, titled ‘Not so EV’, suggests about a third of British Columbians are looking to buy an electric vehicle. But many are a little wary about pulling the plug on their gas guzzling cars.

But many are facing a major barrier: persistent supply chain issues are standing in the way for some, and those challenges aren’t going to be solved any time soon.

“Many British Columbians are currently searching for an EV to buy,” said Kyle Donaldson, BC Hydro spokesperson. “Of those who are actively searching, 41 per cent describe the EV buying process as difficult, but there is reason to be optimistic as new research from an independent automotive analyst shows EV supply chain issues will begin to ease by 2023, with supply close to fully meeting demand by 2026.”

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BC Hydro notes supply chain issues are also starting ease, with the utility citing research that shows 3.5 per cent growth in B.C.’s market share this year compared to last.

With growth expected in the years to come, Hydro says it has plans to install 325 fast charging units at sites across the province by the end of 2025.

Meanwhile, the demand for EVs is apparent.

The utility provider says many people have even joined either one (16 per cent) or more (seven per cent) wait lists for an electric vehicle, with five per cent putting down deposits on more than one EV just in case there are issues with the sale.

In an effort to secure a vehicle, BC Hydro says 13 per cent of people surveyed have asked friends, family, or even neighbours if they could buy their car. Fifteen per cent of respondents have considered buying an EV from out of province or even internationally, and 11 per cent have looked past things like colour or other features they wanted just to get into an EV.

BC Hydro says some have even taken more drastic measures, with one per cent of British Columbians surveyed saying they’ve lied or cheated to get an EV, while another one per cent has admitted to fighting with another EV buyer for one.

The demand continues for electric vehicles as gas prices soar past the $2 per litre mark in Metro Vancouver. Recently, the price at the pump has been hovering near $2.20 for a litre of regular.

High gas prices have plagued much of Canada in recent weeks, though the level at which varies depending on where you are.

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