The Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association (AAAA) has criticised government electric vehicle (EV) targets, saying that at least one state government is planning to decline the registration of all internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles by 2035. The association says on current projections, the move would leave more than 90 per cent of car owners with no avenue to register their vehicles.
According to a new study commissioned by the AAAA, a large gap exists between government EV aspirations and what is likely to be the reality. On current projections, ACA Research predicts that the percentage of EVs on Australian roads would likely be around six per cent by 2030.
CEO of the AAAA, Stuart Charity, said the AAAA and its members are supportive of greater EV uptake but governments need to have a more holistic mindset before announcing unattainable EV targets to score political points.
“Governments and opposition parties are good at announcing very ambitious EV targets without giving much thought to the supporting services needed to make EVs viable – a lack of recharging infrastructure is the obvious hindrance, but little consideration has been given to what’s required to repair and maintain these cars,” Charity said.
“EV targets are seemingly plucked from nowhere with little rationale given, and as an industry we become despondent every time a new target is announced.
Charity said it is easy to set aspirational sales target for EVs, but an in-depth plan is needed to achieve these targets and to support EV owners
“This plan needs to be formulated in consultation with the broader Australian automotive industry. There is specialist knowledge required to repair and maintain EVs, and by engaging and consulting with industry, we can commit to investing in the tools, training and skills to facilitate a more seamless transition to electric vehicles.
“There are long lead times involved in doing this – government can’t snap its fingers and expect that everything will be there ready to go in the background.
“Before Governments mandate EV sales targets, they need to provide our industry with as much notice as possible and engage constructively with us. After all, our members are automotive experts and would provide invaluable insight throughout the process.”