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Electric Vehicle Sales Double Every Year

Electric Vehicles Keep Doubling
Electric Vehicles Keep Doubling

Since 2010, the number electric vehicles on the world’s roads has doubled every year, but can it keep the pace?

Depending on who you ask, there are, more or less, one billion cars in the world, not including trucks, buses, etc, by the end of 2011. About the same time, by the end of 2011, there were less than 50,000 electric vehicles in the world. By the end of 2012, electric vehicles had doubled to about 100,000. Amazingly, by the end of 2013, electric vehicles had doubled again, to over 400,000!

The numbers come from German researchers at ZSW (Zentrums für Sonnenenergie- und Wasserstoff-Forschung or The Center for Solar and Hydrogen Energy Research), in Baden-Württemberg, and include plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, extended-range electric vehicles, and pure electric vehicles. It should come as no surprise that electric vehicles are picking up steam (electrons?), especially in market-leading countries, such as the United States (174,000 electric vehicles), Japan (68,000), and China (45,000). Holland has about 30,000 electric vehicles, and Germany itself around 17,500.

On an automaker basis, the Nissan Leaf takes the lead in electric vehicle sales, having recently reached 100,000 worldwide sales, followed closely by General Motors’ Chevy / Ampera Volt, with 60,000 sold. The Toyota Prius Plug-In has sold over 40,000, and Tesla Roadster and Model S have over 25,000 on the road. Remember the thinking game, “Would you take a million dollars now, or double a penny every day for a month?”

If the doubling trend continued, we could have about a million electric vehicles on the road by mid-2016. No, even ZSW doubts the trend would continue, but if it did, it would be interesting to think about an ever-decreasing conventional vehicle market share. On the other hand, some seem to think that electric vehicles will make up a miniscule part of the market by that time.

Image © ZSW

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