A spatio-temporal approach to electric vehicle uptake: Evidence from New Zealand

Publication Name

Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment


Electrification of transportation is an important option to reduce fossil fuels consumption and carbon emissions. However, electric vehicles (EVs) comprise less than 1.2% of New Zealand's light vehicle fleet, and there are significant hurdles to limit EV uptake. This study uses spatial negative binomial regression models to estimate spatio-temporal factors that influence consumers’ purchase decisions. Two hypotheses are tested: (1) if charging infrastructure has a “neighbourhood effect” on EV uptake; (2) if EVs adoption by technology enthusiasts during the early-adopter phase affects subsequent adoption once the technology becomes widely spread. Results show that charging infrastructure in neighbouring areas and early adoption positively affect subsequent technology adoption. Robustness analysis suggests that the distance spatial weights matrices outperformed other types of alternatives in this study may represent the boundaries of a convenience threshold that drivers perceive when they get their EVs. Thus, policy initiatives aiming to increase the electrification of transport should consider the likelihood of early adoption and the spatial proximity of charging infrastructure.

Open Access Status

This publication is not available as open access



Article Number


Funding Number


Funding Sponsor

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment



Link to publisher version (DOI)