Energy Efficiency

, Volume 11, Issue 8, pp 2181–2201 | Cite as

Electric, plug-in hybrid, hybrid, or conventional? Polish consumers’ preferences for electric vehicles

  • Milan ŠčasnýEmail author
  • Iva Zvěřinová
  • Mikołaj Czajkowski
Original Article
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Energy and Climate Economic Modelling


Poland aims at stimulating the market to reach a target of 50,000 plug-in and battery electric vehicles by 2020. However, as in other Eastern European countries, the market penetration stays very low. In Poland, there were only 475 battery electric vehicles and 514 plug-in electric vehicles registered in 2017. To identify effective support measures, this paper examines the preferences of Polish consumers for three types of electric vehicles: battery, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid vehicles. We use a discrete choice experiment to estimate the willingness to pay of a representative sample of consumers intending to buy a car in Poland. We find that electric vehicles are significantly less preferred than conventional cars, even under a public programme that would enable slow-mode charging in places where respondents usually park. We quantify the marginal willingness to pay for increasing the driving range, reductions in charging time, the availability of fast-mode charging stations, and the provision of policy incentives. The novelty of the paper lies in presenting a scenario with the slow-mode and availability of several levels of fast-mode charging stations and examination of the extent to which the heterogeneity of consumer preferences is driven by place of residence (urban, suburban, rural), intention to buy a new versus a used car, and the annual mileage. This is also the first discrete choice experiment on electric vehicles conducted in Eastern Europe. To stimulate the electric vehicle market, we recommend a pricing policy that affects the operating costs and other incentives along with an effective up-front price incentive scheme.


Battery electric vehicles Hybrid vehicles Discrete choice experiments Willingness to pay Driving range Fast-mode charging infrastructure Recharging time Incentives 



Battery electric vehicle, a vehicle set in motion by an electric motor. Powered by electricity, it has a battery which can be recharged from a regular electric socket.


Plug-in hybrid vehicle, a vehicle with an internal combustion engine (petrol or diesel) and batteries that can also be charged from a regular electric socket. The car can drive several tens of kilometres solely on electricity. When the batteries are empty, the car will automatically switch to the internal combustion engine.


Hybrid vehicle, a vehicle with batteries but without a plug. It has both an internal combustion engine and an electric engine. The combination allows the electric motor and batteries to help the conventional engine operate more efficiently, reducing fuel use. Switching between the two engines occurs automatically without the driver’s intervention. The battery is charged from the energy produced by the combustion engine during driving or while braking. A hybrid car drives several kilometres solely on electricity.


Electric vehicle, includes BEV, PHEV, and HEV


Conventional vehicle, drives on an internal combustion engine that can be fuelled by petrol, diesel, or oil derivatives such as LPG.



This research has been supported by the Czech Science Foundation (GA15-23815S; Ščasný), Charles University (PRIMUS/17/HUM/16; Zvěřinová), and the National Science Centre of Poland (Sonata 10, 2015/19/D/HS4/01972; Czajkowski). Data collection and preliminary analysis were financed by the Polish NCBiR (Centre for Research and Development), within the framework of the project “Development of an Evaluation Framework for the Introduction of Electromobility – DEFINE” provided to the Center for Social and Economic Research (CASE Poland). This article is a part of research presented at the ECOCEP Conference on Economic Modelling for Climate-Energy Policy (FP7-PEOPLE-2013-IRSES, No. 609642) and secondments funded by the H2020-MSCA-RISE under GA 681228. This support is acknowledged. The views expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily those of our institutions. Responsibility for any errors remains with the authors.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

12053_2018_9754_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (716 kb)
ESM 1 (PDF 716 kb)
12053_2018_9754_MOESM2_ESM.pdf (1 mb)
ESM 2 (PDF 1057 kb)


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Environment CentreCharles UniversityPrague 6Czech Republic
  2. 2.Department of Sociology, Faculty of ArtsCharles UniversityPragueCzech Republic
  3. 3.Faculty of Economic SciencesUniversity of WarsawWarsawPoland

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