Most people who but a Ute for actual work are going to want 4wd and aren't going to buy it based on economics unless it can be made to compare financially with the current vehicles they buy.
Tradesmen and farmers aren't poseurs buying Chelsea Tractors for the school run.
Anecdotally I don’t think this is correct. Most tradesmen wouldn’t need 4WD, and probably a fair percentage of farmers don’t need it either. Both groups would spend what they need. I reckon the sales statistics bear reflect this anecdote.
i reckon 4WD are preferred by a fair percentage of farmers, and outdoors lifestylers who spend a bit of time off-road, towing boats, and the like.
I don’t think anyone gets a ute for the school run.
Anecdotally or not, almost every tradesman round here drives a 4WD ute, so does every farmer and the farm staff.
Your anecdote may be correct in Auckland, it is not correct in the actual working countryside.
Historically I think that was partly because the 4WD ones were higher off the ground, so there was more ground clearance, but 4WD for towing and steep/rough conditions also helps some. Also they look tougher and more intimating being higher off the ground. But the newer models seem to be almost as high these days. I suspect there are more tradies and commercial buyers of utes than just farmers these days, so they wouldn't have the need for 4WD. Bu this electric one will probably not suit farm much