One in eight UK drivers plan to go electric with their next vehicle

One in five are ready to ditch the driving seat altogether for a driverless car.

One in 10 UK drivers (10%) plan to buy a hybrid model for their next vehicle, according to a new report on cars and technology from Aviva. A further two percent intend to purchase a fully electric vehicle as their next model.

The figures are taken from Aviva’s upcoming ‘Connected Car’ report (due to be launched on 28 July 2017), which compiles the opinions of 2,134 UK drivers on in-car technology and innovations in motoring.

However, the report finds that the majority of UK drivers still expect to be using fossil fuel powered vehicles for the foreseeable future: 68% plan to buy a petrol-fuelled vehicle for their next purchase, while 21%* expect to buy a diesel-powered model.

And while there is an apparent appetite for vehicles powered by alternative means, industry figures suggest that the desire for hybrid and electric models may be an aspiration rather than an immediate reality for some.

In 2016 hybrid and electric models accounted for 3.3%** of new vehicles registered in the UK. However, latest figures indicate this is an area of growth, with an increase of 39% year-on-year between June 2016 and June 2017 for new petrol-electric hybrid vehicles registered in the UK, and a year-on-year increase of 46% for pure electric plug-in vehicle registrations over the same period.

Amongst those who say they wouldn’t consider an electric / hybrid vehicle for their next purchase, the main concern is around the cost of the vehicle, a consideration of 55% of drivers in this bracket. This is followed by worries about limited range (44%) and the length of time taken to charge vehicles (39%).

Reason for not choosing a hybrid / electric vehicle for next motor purchase Percentage of drivers (who wouldn’t choose a hybrid / electric vehicle) who gave this response
High purchase price 55%
Limited range 44%
Length of time to charge 39%
Fear of being stranded  33%
Performance vs petrol / diesel vehicles 19%

One in five motorists would use a driverless car

As a general rule, drivers welcome technology to improve the driving experience, with three quarters (74%) of motorists using in-car technology or gadgets when they drive.

In line with this, one in five UK drivers questioned said they would be happy to use a driverless car, although the majority of motorists are still cautious about the concept. Around a third (31%) said they ‘don’t know’ whether they would use one currently and almost half of motorists (49%) said they wouldn’t use a driverless car at this point in time.

Those who said they wouldn’t use a driverless car gave the following reasons:

Primary reasons for not wanting to use a driverless vehicle: Percentage of drivers who wouldn’t use a driverless car said this:
I would rather be in control  42%
I wouldn’t trust the technology  41%
I don’t understand enough about them  9%
I’d be concerned about being on the roads with non-driverless cars 7%

Paul Heybourne, Head of Digital Innovation Operations, Aviva, says: “We’re a nation of car lovers and there’s a clear enthusiasm for technologies which improve the driving experience. There’s also evidence that people want to embrace new innovations, with one in eight drivers saying they’d choose a hybrid or electric model for their next vehicle and one in five ready to adopt driverless technology.

“As with any new technology, there is some nervousness about driverless cars, but many drivers admit this is because they don’t know enough about them, so any concerns will inevitably wane over time. Technology is evolving at an unprecedented pace, so it will be fascinating to see whether consumer adoption will match.”

The full Aviva Connected Car report can be found here.

Read more:

Should I get a dash cam?

How is technology helping drivers?


Media Enquiries: Aviva Press Office | Sarah Poulter | 07800 691569 | | @sarahpoulter

Notes to editors:

Unless stated otherwise, all statistics relate to a survey of 2,134 UK drivers who drive at least once a week. The poll was conducted by Censuswide research in April 2017.

*Due to rounding, percentages associated with different vehicle types (for next purchases) total 101%.

**Data from The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT)

About Aviva:

  • Aviva provides life insurance, general insurance, health insurance and asset management to 33 million customers, across 16 markets worldwide
  • In the UK we are the leading insurer serving one in every four households and have strong businesses in selected markets in Europe, Asia and Canada. Our shares are listed on the London Stock Exchange and we are a member of the FTSE100 index.  
  • Aviva’s asset management business, Aviva Investors, provides asset management services to both Aviva and external clients, and currently manages over £319 billion in assets.
  • Aviva helps people save for the future and manage the risks of everyday life; we paid out £34.4 billion in benefits and claims in 2016.
  • By serving our customers well, we are building a business which is strong and sustainable, which our people are proud to work for, and which makes a positive contribution to society.
  • The Aviva media centre at includes company information, images, and a news release archive.
  • For an introduction to what we do and how we do it, please click here
  • For broadcast-standard video, please visit
  • Follow us on twitter:
  • Follow us on LinkedIn:
  • For the latest corporate films from around our business, subscribe to our YouTube channel:
  •  We have a Globelynx system for broadcast interviews. Please contact the Press Officer noted above if you would like to make a booking.