Electric vehicles may have got off to a shaky start, but they are finally hitting the mainstream. It took 5 years for the first million electric cars to be sold – in 2018 it took just 6 months.
That wasn’t the only milestone reached in 2018. In the same year, the Tesla Model 3 became the first electric vehicle to shift 100,000 units in a single year. Another popular electric vehicle – the Nissan Leaf – also smashed sales records in 2018.
Countries all around the world are introducing legislation to speed up the adoption of electric vehicles, with the goal of phasing out gasoline-powered cars before the middle of the century. The UK for example want to ban the sale of new petrol or diesel cars by 2040.
When it comes to electric car sales, two countries are way ahead of the pack – Norway has by far the highest percentage of electric vehicle sales, and China is the clear winner in terms of total sales.
The chart below, provided by Visual Capitalist really highlights how far ahead these two nations are:
Almost half of all cars sold in Norway are electric – compared to 19% in second place Iceland, and just 2.5% in the UK.
As a nation that once made a fortune from natural gas and oil, Norway has invested heavily in low-carbon technology and incentives, with a highly ambitious goal of becoming a zero-emission country by 2025.
As one of the most populous countries in the world, China are stepping up to their responsibility to reduce their carbon footprint. In 2018 alone they sold more than 1 million electric cars. The Chinese cities of Shenzhen and Shanghai sold more electric vehicles than any other country in the world, with the exception of the United States.
The USA takes the second spot in overall sales, with just over 300,000 units sold in 2018. Norway, despite having a much smaller population that the US or China, still managed to grab the 3rd place spot with around 73,000 sales.
Who has the most charging stations?
Once again, China leads the way, followed by the USA and Germany. The UK sits in the seventh spot, just behind France, Japan and the Netherlands: