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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
(730 words, 2 minutes to read)

According to some surveys, women are a bit more likely to make changes to their life for reasons like sustainability and climate change (and both Fridays for Future and zero waste movements are female led) but this doesn´t seem to carry over to cars.

I´ve noticed there are not that many women participating in the EV culture whether it´s this or other forums, people making videos, people in online debates etc. Of course, it´s hard to tell whether the women make up 20% or 40% of the people on this forum (or in other places) but I would guess it´s not 50% since most people have either male names or non specific names (in terms of gender).

I´ve often heard women mentioned on this forum in a context like “want to get an EV, but wife worried about long trips” or something like that. But again it could be that the women who had to convince their partners just don´t come on forums and post about it and debate all the details of EVs, or that I happen to have seen a few anecdotal comments that aren´t representative.

However this isn´t just about the online world; according to a google search it does seem like women are only buying about 30% of the EVs even though women buy a higher percentage of all the cars (nearer to half).
Here is one source (I found various others with similar results):
"The ratio of male-to-female applicants for California’s Clean Vehicle Rebate (CVR) averaged approximately three males for every female from early 2011 to mid-2015; the ratio for all new vehicle transactions is approximately one-to-one". Are We Hardwiring Gender Differences into the Plug-In Electric Vehicle Market? | National Center for Sustainable Transportation

I did wonder at first if it´s because more men tend to be early adopters of tech, however I googled that as well and it´s debatable whether that statement is even true. According to a variety of surveys and opinions and stats I found, it´s either just a wrong stereotype that more men early adopt tech, out of date, or a true difference but a very small one.

It could be that women are more likely to buy SUVs (googled that, looks like probably true) and there are less EV SUVs. (Then again, you could make the same argument about men and pickup trucks in the Americas, although perhaps not in Europe or elsewhere where they are less common.)

It could be the Elon Musk factor. He made Teslas perhaps more like big boy`s toys than cars for women or families, and this may have influenced others in the industry too, leading to a situation where women´s needs aren´t being considered enough in the car design and marketing.

A small contributing factor could be that the up front cost of EVs is harder for women because they earn on average a little less. However with a lot of women in relationships where money is shared, and the pay gap not being so huge, I expect this would be a minor reason.

Another suggestion: are women more concerned about range anxiety (safety at at charging points and breaking down/convenience). Honestly not sure if that´s an unfair and teeny bit sexist stereotype or not in the modern world. Or maybe it´s true. Don´t really have evidence on this one. Maybe some women can comment on this one.

Overall I´d guess it comes down to a mix of reasons.

Some ideas to get more women into EVs: (I´m not very confident about this last part, but maybe starting point for discussion)

---More cars higher off the ground. (Those SUVs with SUV height but length of an average sedan or even a bit less could be produced effectively as mass market EVs in terms of trade offs between cost, range, weight, battery size and environmental damage in car production.)

---Specific marketing at women. Instead of talking about the number of KW and KWH, maybe consider alternative approaches. And don´t be embarrassed to mention the eco advantage only as an afterthought.

---Security at charging points. Lighting, cameras, guards, assistance on site in person.

---Get more women into the auto industry. Seems to be mostly men in mid and high positions.

---More work place and destination chargers so women don´t have to look for charging points on their own on dark cold nights.
 

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I think there are a lot less women on the forums but more on social media

my wife is active on the EV groups on Facebook but she does not like forums. I did ask her and she said the Facebook groups were friendlier and easier to navigate..

Personally I don’t like Facebook and don’t use it so maybe it’s a thing that the female EV drivers are more likely on social media groups than traditional forum type sites
 

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Apparently there’s a Facebook group called ‘Tesla Divas’, where they talk about the men.
 

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Maybe women are less defined by their cars...so just make the choices that make sense to them, and don't need forum support to club together and justify themselves 😉

In particular - it seems to be very easy for men to justify spending large amounts on a car for many reasons that have little to do with practicality (power, image etc) - maybe that extends to environmental benefit. EVs are way more expensive and perhaps that spend isn't justified to most women.
 

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I suspect women have other things to do than bother with a group like this. My wife likes to use the MG ZS but isn’t bothered about the technology. She will argue with friends who see all the problems about range and charging and has all the answers on whole life costs but won’t be seen here.
 

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As a gay man my partner seems to think more like a female - does not want anything that will not do the job its supoed to do without fuss and its a definite no if he cannot rely on it to visit his mother at a moments notice.
😉😉😉
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
A lot of the comments tend to be the about the question of whether women go to forums or not or something similar. I intended that to be a small, tangential aspect of this debate.

However regardless of what is the story there (and perhaps I didn´t do a good job of making this clear in the article) women do really buy EVs less, if you google it there is plenty of evidence or I can post a few links here later or tomorrow if anyone wants. So the question is why that is.

Women posting less on forums doesn´t explain why statistics show that the % of EVs sold to women is lower than the % of all cars sold to women. So it doesn´t get to the heart of the debate.
 

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Technical I have purchased all the EVs in our household, my name on the V5, but my wife doesn't like driving ice cars.

In our house it's probably because I'm much more interested in the technical side and have made all the enquiries and asked the technical questions but the Golf has been 'her car' most of the time and was bought with her daily driving in mind.
In fact one of the reasons we bought it was the familiarity to her Polo, which was her car.
 

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---More cars higher off the ground. (Those SUVs with SUV height but length of an average sedan or even a bit less could be produced effectively as mass market EVs in terms of trade offs between cost, range, weight, battery size and environmental damage in car production.)
What? Crossovers?
They already exist. Like the Kona, Niro, and probably others like the MGs which I've not checked dimensions of.
 

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Hmm, as a woman on this forum and active on Facebook relevant EV spaces this is interesting to me. I led the charge to buy a full EV in our household, but then I am the practical person. My DH is very enthusiastic about supporting environmentally friendly developments but I would be the one actually pioneering it and making it happen. So I chose the car, organised the charging point and communicate about our car on social media. I recognise that I may be taking the trad role in this area. It's one of the reasons I try to post, to encourage other women. I think loving a car is traditionally a male enclave. And I do really love our EV - but only because it's an EV. I have never cared about any of our previous vehicles - and have traditionally referred to them as 'the black one' or 'the low down one' and have never been able to find them in car parks because I didn't care what they were. But now - in the EV world, I really care. I may be wrong but I do hope running an EV is reducing pollution and helping the environment. I am someone who jumps in feet first. I must admit that my first attempt at solo public charging took place in a shady, odd, under the railway bridge location in London. I did feel a frisson of fear and wondered if I was seriously at risk. So I drove on to a nice leafy safer location and got out my manual and phone and worked out how to charge the car. So I think safety issues for women (those with more foresight than me) could be serious.
 

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If my experience is any measure, not just with my wife, but with all the females in my extended family, with the probable exception of my sister, I would perhaps suggest it is because men are far more emotional about cars where as for many women it is a totally non emotional tool that they just want to work and they dont need to think about it beyond that. Is it comfortable? What is the field of vision like? What size is it and do I feel comfortable driving it? These are the key things that matter.

The reason why this may therefore have an impact is perhaps that women will often gladly delegate the research aspect to their partner because they are not interested. So perhaps if the male carrying out the research is not into EVs, that opinion wins out.

I do think that the charging infrastructure currently would be an issue at the moment as well. Woman are likely to worry.much more, with much justification, about finding themselves stuck and searching out a lonely single unit, and I would fully understand why that would be a problem.
 

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Could it be due in no small part to the wage inequality between men and women?
Blokes can far more easily justify spending a larger wodge of cash every month on an EV than many women as they are still seen in the eyes of many as being the main breadwinners in the household.

My OH earns considerably more than me, she's a doctor, who has always been interested in cars and could easily afford an upmarket EV. She has test driven Tesla M3 and MS along with the MB EQC, but still sticks to her MB GLC for now and rarely considers driving my I-Pace, unless she really has to, citing all the usual claptrap as to why EV's won't be the de facto choice anytime soon.

I think it's also telling, as @Roo stated up the thread that she uses social media far more to extol the virtues of her EV. Women are far more likely to use social media as their main source of interraction whereas blokes are just as likely to join a specific forum with like minded individuals. Are men more clubbable than women? Do they enjoy the willy-waving gobbledegook of forums whereas women focus far more on the practicalities in their social media posts?

Tl;dr we are all different. Don't expect one size to fit all.
 

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What's the overall percentage of cars bought by women? Is there a significant statistical difference between ICE and EV in that respect?
 

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Generally, women don't get as excited about cars as men. As said above, it's a tool to get her from A to B and as long as that happens reliably and the colour works, she won't care that much.


What's the overall percentage of cars bought by women? Is there a significant statistical difference between ICE and EV in that respect?
I don't think a blanket men v women car buying breakdown would mean much. However, if you look at the value of cars bought by gender, criteria like power/speed/size then the data may be more helpful.

This is really difficult to answer without sweeping generalisations, bordering on sexist, but for the majority of younger women, it'll be getting herself plus friends to/from work/shopping. Once older, family life kicks in and maybe the decision making on cars isn't something she'll keep full control over (budgets/size/space available/1st or 2nd car) even if she'll have a fairly equal share in decision making.
 

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I know anecdotal evidence isn't worth much, but FWIW my wife was not at all keen when I decided to buy a new Prius in 2005. It took a long time for her to accept that the electric drive element would be reliable and safe. I tried to suggest that a hybrid would suit her use case for a car for a long time, but she didn't agree to buy a small hybrid until 2013, at the same time as I was switching to a plug-in hybrid. When I switched to an EV a few years later, she was every bit as concerned as she had been when I bought a Prius, years earlier. It wasn't until I bought a Tesla in 2019 that she started to come around to the idea of getting an EV herself. Even then it took her a long time, looking at reviews and deciding whether she could cope with things like charging, before she decided to order a new Zoe a week or so ago. Even now, I get the feeling that if there are any glitches with the car, or charging it, she may well switch back to an ICE car again. For her, the technology is really the least important aspect of a car, it has to do everything she wants reliably and safely.
 

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Women are more risk averse on average, which probably explains the being more worried about long trips. I have nothing to back this up but I feel like they probably spend less overall on cars each year? If that's true it'd be another contributing factor since the up-front headline cost of EVs is still higher. My wife loves our EV and wishes we'd gotten it sooner. Both of us moan when we have to drive the 2018 well-specced diesel!
 

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My sister (28) is relatively interested in cars, colour is a big factor for her so not that interested but she does care what engine & trim level it has, e.g. won't buy a poverty spec underpowered hatch but she also would be hard swayed against anything that would inconvenience her and at the minute BEVs are more of an inconvenience broadly speaking to an ICEV.
When I got my Ampera she thinks its a 'faff' to have to plug it in every night etc and isn't interested in it at all.
My mum (67) is keen on low running costs and bought a 10 year old Prius about 3 years ago which has been utterly faultless and does return around 50mpg. She's isn't particularly interested in cars and has not once opened the bonnet on the Prius in 3 years but thinks her next car will be either PHEV or BEV because she is keen on the fuel savings.
Most notably neither of them would ever join or use a car forum/facebook group.
 
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