Report: Electric vehicle purchases to represent 5 percent of U.S. sales by 2017

In recent weeks, automakers Chevrolet and Honda have launched new electric car offerings, anticipating that the demand for these types of vehicles will grow stronger. And according to a market research and consulting firm, that will likely be the case.

A new report published by Pike Research suggests that hybrid electric and plug-in electric vehicles will represent 3 percent of worldwide auto sales by 2017. However, when taking just the U.S. into consideration, HEVs and PEVs will account for more than 5 percent of domestic sales.

Dave Hurst, senior analyst for Pike Research, said auto industry observers will start to see the movement toward buying these types of vehicles soon.

"The EV market will grow at a rapid clip in the next six years—at a rate of nearly 20 percent a year, compared to fewer than 4 percent for the worldwide market for vehicles of all kinds," he said.

The firm said the demand for these types of vehicles has been driven by rising fuel costs and a considerable number of consumer purchase incentives, like low-interest financing or tax credits.

Carbuyers who foresee themselves buying fuel-efficient vehicles like these should try and maintain stellar credit scores if they will be financing, as it will enable them to borrow at an affordable rate.