Driving an electric vehicle. A sociological analysis on pioneer users
In most of the western countries, car is the prevalent means of transport for local mobility. At the same time, sensitivity to environmental issues is increasing, correlated to the consciousness that carbon dioxide emissions have to be reduced. In regard to these two trends (individual mobility and public opinions favourable to a reduction of carbon emissions), energy-efficient vehicles will probably develop in the future-car manufacturers actually prepare new offers for the mass market. Comparable cases have occurred during the last decades-probably more modest but full of learning: some local authorities have promoted innovations based on electric vehicles in the 1990s, and some people have chosen this kind of cars for their daily travels. This article deals with these pioneers (This article comes from a communication at the ECEEE Summer Study, June 2009, Panel 6: Energy efficiency in transport and mobility.). Reporting studies carried out in 2006 and 2008, we intend to identify the reasons of this innovative modal choice, to show the difficulties that electric vehicle drivers then encountered and to analyse the patterns of use that governed their mobility and their use of electric vehicles.