The International Energy Agency IEA says there are now over 3 million plug-in vehicles on the roads worldwide, 54% more than last year. The biggest markets were China and the USA but the Nordics beat them when it comes to marketshare.
The latest edition of the International Energy Agency’s Global Electric Vehicles Outlook says the number of electric and plug-in hybrid cars on the world’s roads exceeded 3 million in 2017, a 54% increase compared with 2016.
China remained the world’s largest electric car market, accounting for half of all sold last year. Nearly 580,000 electric cars were sold in China in 2017, a 72% increase from 2016. The United States came in as the second biggest market with about 280,000 cars sold in 2017, up from 160,000 in 2016.
Scandinavia remained in the lead for plug-in market share. Electric cars accounted for 39% of new car sales in Norway, making it the world’s EV paradise. In Iceland, new EV sales were 12% of the total while the share reached 6% in Sweden. Germany and Japan also saw strong growth, with sales more than doubling in both countries from their 2016 levels.
Also other forms of electric mobility had a strong year. In 2017, the number of electric buses rose to 370,000 from 345,000 in 2016, and electric two-wheelers such as e-scooters and pedelec reached 250 million. Again it is China leading the way, alone almost as the PRC accounts for more than 99% of both electric bus and two-wheeler stock, though registrations in Europe and India are also growing.
The IEA also looked at charging infrastructure. In 2017, the number of private chargers at homes and workplaces was estimated at almost 3 million worldwide. In addition, there were about 430,000 public charging stations, a quarter of which were fast chargers in 2017.
The press release claims the growth in plug-in car registrations is largely due to new policies and regulations but also advances in battery technology.
The report further forecasts growth, saying “supportive policies and cost reductions are likely to lead to continued significant growth in the EV market”. The IEA’s New Policies Scenario thus predicts the number of electric cars to reach 125 million units by 2030. In a best case scenario called EV30@30 Scenario, the number of electric cars on the road could be as high as 220 million in 2030.