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Surge In Americans Who Expect To Buy Electric Cars, AAA Says

Nissan Leaf electric cars.
Nissan Leaf electric cars. Photo Credit: wikicommons

American drivers are going green, are you?

With gas prices on the rise, a new study released by AAA found that demand for electric vehicles is on the rise, with 20 percent of Americans proclaiming their next car will be electric. The latest survey is an increase of 5 percent from last year.

According to AAA, improved safety features, decreased ownership costs and increased driving ranges are driving consumers to electric cars. There is also less fears that the battery of an electric vehicle may run out of power mid-trip, the report states, noting that the prevalence of charging stations across the country has helped assuage potential buyers’ concerns.

The rise of electric cars over gas-powered car comes as gas prices reach their highest October point in four years. Nationally, the average price per gallon of gas is $2.91, up eight cents from a month ago and 43 cents from a year ago. In New York, the average price is at $3.01, while Connecticut is paying $3.03 per gallon.

“The September switch-over to winter-blend gasoline ushered in cheaper gas prices compared to the summer, but that drop was short-lived,” Jeanette Casselano, AAA spokesperson said. “Crude oil accounts for half of the retail pump price and crude is selling at some of the highest price points in four years. That means fall and year-end prices are going to be unseasonably expensive.”

AAA noted that electric cars can cost about half as much to operate than a gas-powered car.

"Electric vehicles have mainstream appeal," Greg Brannon, AAA's director of Automotive Engineering, stated. "While concern for the environment is still a major motivator, AAA found United States drivers are also attracted to the lower long-term costs and advanced technology features that many of these vehicles offer.

“Today’s drivers are accustomed to a quick fill up at the corner gas station, but electric vehicle charging can sometimes take several hours. With a little planning, electric vehicle owners can avoid a roadside inconvenience and, as technology improves, charging times will too.”

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