Electric Vehicle Demand of French Households: a Socio-economic Estimation Under Specific Policy Packages

Electric Vehicle Demand of French Households: a Socio-economic Estimation Under Specific Policy Packages


E Windisch, LVMT - Universite Paris-Est, FR


Using the French National Transport Survey and a detailed total costs of ownership model, the demand of privately hold electric vehicles is predicted. A special focus is put on the Paris region.


Battery drive electric vehicles (EV) are on the verge of being launched. Public policy measures have been largely introduced while their effect on potential demand still remains rather unclear.

Demand forecasts of EVs, providing decision support for policy makers as well as market projections for vehicle manufacturers have, so far, been almost exclusively based on either large scale macro-economic models or on disaggregate models derived from stated preference surveys. Both of these approaches neglect, however, important and decisive factors influencing future demand: Whereas the first approach neglects crucial territorial characteristics that define vehicle user and usage patterns, the second one is based on the hazardous assumption that potential vehicle buyers have the ability to make well reasoned and mature decisions in fictive choice experiments which are, however, still subject to many uncertainties. These deficiencies call for more reliable demand projections that take effects of possible (combinations) of policy measures into account.

For this purpose, this study introduces an empirical methodology based on the French national transport survey and on detailed total costs of ownership calculations in order to project private EV demand of households. First, vehicle users' mobility habits and their households' infrastructure are checked against the limits and needs of an EV. Compatibility criteria are introduced and each household recorded in the available data set is analysed according to these criteria. An incremental application of defined criteria shows most stringent factors and impedances to EV uptake. Next, households that conform to all defined EV-compatibility criteria, are then checked against a further economic criterion: Only households for which an EV purchase shows a financial profit compared to the purchase of a conventional vehicle (CV) are supposed to be potential EV buyers. This economic analysis is based on a Total Costs of Ownership (TCO) approach that does not only take purchase but also vehicle usage costs during the whole ownership period of the vehicle into account. Having applied all compatibility and economic selection criteria, the remaining households are seen as potential EV households that will most likely create future EV demand.

Several realistic policy and market development scenarios are finally introduced and analysed in order to derive their possible impact on EV demand.

The study does not only derive likely EV demand in a reliable way, but also reveals most promising and reasonable lines of action for policy makers. The sketched methodology is applied to France and more specifically to the Paris region, which constitutes are very interesting study area.

This paper constitutes the continuation and finalisation of research work that was presented at last year's ETC.


Association for European Transport