Understanding the Early Adopters of Fuel Cell Vehicles

The market introduction of fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) is dependent on the vehicles being purchased by consumers. The first consumers to buy any new product are early adopters. The early adopters of battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are well understood thanks to several years of research into the BEV market. No research has been undertaken to understand who the early adopters of FCVs are. This study analyzed data gathered by the PH&EV center for the eVMT project to understand the early adopters of FCVs. The data includes information on household sociodemographics (income, education, age, gender, household size etc.), household vehicles, travel patterns (commute distance, long distance trips), and locality to hydrogen fueling stations for more than 400 household that drive FCVs. This study analyzed this data to understand more about the consumers who are currently purchasing or leasing FCVs. This information will be useful to policy makers as it will help them understand which consumers are purchasing the vehicle, where they live, and their travel patterns. The information can inform policy makers on what impact policies to promote the deployment of FCVs are having. It also reveals if the introduction of FCVs will add new adaptors to the ZEV market or cannibalize the demand for BEVs or PHEVS. The results can help in planning incentives, station locations, and other policies aimed to increase the total number of ZEVs.


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