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Which car brands are perceived to be best placed for the shift to EVs?

 

A global poll of in-market new car buyers has assessed their perception of car makers' ability to survive the shift to electrified powertrains.

The poll, conducted by behavior experts SKIM Group, looked at how car buyers viewed a car manufacturer in four areas: Success (how successful a brand is perceived to be by 2030), Innovation, Sustainability, and EV Leadership, with an overall combined Perception score.

The top car manufacturer overall was perceived to be Tesla, followed by the Chinese brands of NIO and BYD. Specifically for EV Leadership, the leading brand was Tesla, followed by the Chinese brands BYD and Lucid Motors.

Tesla model 3 electric car in black

The bottom three brands overall that were perceived to be struggling to keep up with the pace of the Electric Vehicle revolution in the eyes of car buyers were Cadillac, Peugeot, and Renault.

EV-only brands perform strongly, particularly those from China or with Chinese backing, thanks to their ability to offer competitive pricing and leading technology. However, legacy OEMs from Europe are judged to be struggling the most.

North American car makers are assessed as being split between the new Californian brands doing exceptionally well, like Rivian and Tesla. At the same time, historic Detroit names like Cadillac, Chevrolet, and Ford perform poorly. One in five new car buyers surveyed thought that Cadillac may no longer exist by 2030.

 

Renault Megane E-Tech Iconic trim

Although Tesla tops the list overall, BYD and NIO were joint first in the Success Score league table, ahead of XPeng in third place – all three are Chinese brands.

SKIM Group says that buyers were incredibly skeptical of legacy OEMs, with only 23% perceiving Cadillac is doing well. In fact, say 3 out of 4 people (around 75%) thought Cadillac could be out of business by 2030.

Chinese brands were also perceived well in sustainability, with the top four in this category being XPeng, NIO, Tesla, and BYD.

The SKIM PERCEPTION SCORE league tables are detailed below. SKIM conducted this research in 2022 through an online survey with a sample of 2,373 respondents.

 

The SKIM PERCEPTION SCORE league table

This score reflects a combined ranking of:

• Success Score: perceived as doing well or extremely well by 2030

• Innovation Score: perceived as innovators in the industry

• Sustainability Score: perceived as having strong sustainability credentials

• Leader Score: Perceived as being a leader in Electric Vehicles

Combined Score

Overall top leading combined score.

Highest %

1. Tesla

2. NIO

3. BYD

4. X-Peng

5. Rivian

70%

62%

62%

59%

55%

Lowest %

22. Chevrolet

23. Mini

24. Cadillac

25. Peugeot

26. Renault

25%

23%

22%

22%

22%

Success Score

Perceived as ‘doing well’ or ‘extremely well’ by 2030.

Highest %

1. BYD 

2. NIO

3. XPeng

4. Tesla

5. Rivian

69%

69%

62%

60%

58%

Lowest %

22. Chevrolet

23. Peugeot

24. Mini

25. Renault

26. Cadillac

26%

24%

24%

23%

23%

Innovation score

Perceived as being innovative.

Highest %

1. Tesla

2. BYD

3. NIO

4. Mercedes

5. Audi

79%

68%

66%

65%

65%

Lowest %

22. Byton

23. Chevrolet

24. Cadillac

25. Renault

26. Peugeot

36%

34%

31%

31%

31%

Sustainability Score

Perceived as having strong sustainability credentials.

Highest %

1. XPeng

2. NIO

3. Tesla

4. BYD

5. Rivian

65%

60%

56%

54%

49%

Lowest %

22. Porsche

23. Mini

24. Peugeot

25. Cadillac

26. Renault

20%

18%

18%

17%

15%

EV Leader Score

Brands perceived as being a leader in Electric Vehicles.

Highest %

1 Tesla

2. BYD

3. Lucid Motors

4. NIO

5. X-Peng

86%

56%

55%

53%

51%

Lowest %

22. Chevrolet

23. DS Automobiles

24. Renault

25. Peugeot

26. Mini

18%

17%

17%

16%

15%

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