Analysis of the Decision to Lease an Electric Vehicle and the Impact of Incentives on the Electric Vehicle Lease Market

When financing a plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) consumers have the option to either purchase the car, or lease it for a fixed period. The relationship between the finance method, which PEV is ultimately selected, the impact of incentives on the purchase/lease decision, and the impact of leasing on fleet turnover has yet to be explored for the PEV market. This project will utilize survey data from 26,000 PEV drivers in CA who were surveyed in 2015-2020. Using a choice model, the project will identify behavioral differences between those who purchase versus lease, discuss how the characteristics of a vehicle technology influence the decision, and will investigate the impact of incentives on the decision to lease a PEV. The project will also explore how the vehicle purchase/lease behavior is impacting PEV penetration into the mass market as leased vehicles tend to enter the used vehicle market sooner than those purchased. The results from the project will allow automakers to evaluate the vehicle and buyer characteristics that influence their financing decision, and will allow policymakers to evaluate the effectiveness of monetary incentives for PEVs on the adoption decision, received at different points of time under the two financing possibilities.

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