Despite their constant push, neither the US nor China could outbid the western European countries as a leader in the electric vehicle consumption in 2018. The country with the highest EV penetration last year was Norway, where one in three new cars sold was pure electric.
According to the Norwegian Road Federation (NRF), more than 31% of the cars sold last year were pure-breed electric, Reuters reported. This new global record was set as part of Norway’s pledge to shift completely towards environment-friendly vehicles by 2025.
EV consumption in Norway has been steadily increasing since 2013 when the market share was just around 8%. Norway offers a slew of benefits to electric car owners including lower taxes and free charging points.
However, overall car sales slid about 7% in 2018, the NRF data showed. This has been a deviation from the earlier steady increase in year-over-year auto sales. Nissan, BMW and Volkswagen and Tesla (TSLA) were the top sellers last year.
Meanwhile, data compiled by The International Energy Agency shows EV market share in Norway at around 40%, including hybrid vehicles. This is miles ahead of the runner-up Iceland, which has about 12% market penetration. The US and China are way below these European countries with a market share of 1.2% and 2.2% respectively.
The US government had recently slashed its EV tax credit by half to $3,750, effective January 1. Following this move, EV pioneer Tesla had reduced the price tag on its new electric vehicles by $2,000 to offset the tax credit cut.