The California Plug-in Electric Vehicle Collaborative has just announced that over 100,000 electric vehicles have been sold in the Golden State since the introduction of the first major electric vehicle (EV) models (Nissan Leaf and Chevy Volt) in late 2010. In the last 12 months alone the state added about 50,000 EVs, and the sales of EVs continues to increase. The most current stats show that EVs now make up about 3% of new car sales in the state and when combined with gasoline-only hybrids, almost 1 in 10 new cars sold in California have some type of electric drive.
EVs bring fuel and climate savings for Californians
With 102,000 EVs sold, Californians are saving over 27 million gallons of gas each year, saving $61 million in fuel spending, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 195,000 tons each year. This is still small compared to the overall impact from oil use in transportation, but it’s a good step in the right direction toward California’s goal of 1.5 million EVs by 2025.
Californians with EVs are also saving money at the pump at the household level. A driver with a 50 mile daily commute switching from compact gasoline car to an electric car can save $700 to $1000 each year on gas. EVs make sense for both the health and pocketbooks of Californians.
EVs aren’t just in California though
California is the leader for EV sales, but sales are also growing nationwide. Sales of EVs in the US will cross the quarter million mark within weeks and monthly EV sales have been above 10,000 for the last 4 months.
Will we continue to see rapid growth in the EV market? I can’t predict the future, but a couple of the factors that have brought the market to its current state look to continue:
1) Automakers are producing more models of EVs, giving consumers more choices. There are now almost 20 models of EV available in California, with more arriving every year.
2) Federal, state, and local efforts to incentivize EV purchases are helping, with California leading the way. Purchase incentives and carpool lane access continue to motivate buying decisions and more states are adding programs to help make buying or using an EV easier.
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