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Most automakers plan to sell all- or mostly-electric lineups in a little more than a decade. But, as with most new things, people are reluctant to say they’d consider buying something they’ve never seen.

Studies show that Americans grow more willing to buy an electric vehicle the more time they spend around them. But more than a third of Americans haven’t been exposed to them at all, according to a new study.

Consumer Reports asked 9,030 Americans about their attitudes toward EVs and their experience with them. Though most of CR’s studies survey only the magazine’s subscribers, this one used a representative sample of the American public.

Also read: There’s now a tax credit for installing an EV charger in your home—here’s what to know

Respondents earned one point for having seen an EV in their neighborhood, one point for knowing someone who owns one, one point for riding as a passenger in an EV, and one point for driving one at least once.

A total of 34% of respondents earned zero points.

Just 5% had had all four experiences.

The study is significant because “willingness to get an EV increases as EV experience scores increase,” CR says.

Electric vehicle companies face slower-than-expected growth and financing difficulties, as interest rates dry up easy access to cash. Federal and state incentives, however, could accelerate EV adoption and manufacturing.

The data “may also help to explain why analyses of EV sales data tend to show rapid growth in areas where EVs are already popular and commonly seen, and why EV sales tend to lag in areas where EVs are still rare,” CR says. People tend to do as their peer group does.

CR found few Americans knew about tax incentives designed to make EV ownership more affordable. Just 47% knew about federal EV tax incentives that can cut up to $7,500 of the price of an EV. Only 19% knew that many states have EV tax discount programs.

Plus: Most Americans mistrust self-driving technology, survey finds, though some see potential

Almost half reported that having tax discounts available at the time of purchase “would encourage them to purchase an EV.” Under a program new for 2024, Americans can now use their $7,500 EV tax rebate as a down payment on many electric cars.

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