The market share of electric vehicles is growing rapidly
We’ve told you about the struggles in the auto industry lately – microchip shortages, supply chain problems – but even so, EV sales continue to rise.
Electric vehicles accounted for nearly 5% of US sales of light trucks in July, according to consultancy Atlas Public Policy. That is almost double the previous year’s sales.
Tesla is still dominating the market, but Ford announced this week that it is opening electric vehicle factories in Kentucky and Tennessee. Then there are the buyer incentives and the infrastructure funding in the budget reconciliation draft in Congress.
Let’s not lose context here: sales of electric vehicles without hybrids still account for just over 2% of sales. But their growth is strong.
There are a number of reasons for this, like climate policies and industry investments, but ultimately automakers are meeting the demands of the market, said Chris Harto of Consumer Reports.
“Until about a year ago, if you wanted an electric vehicle that cost less than $ 50,000, all of your options were compact,” Harto said. This class size is not very popular, even for cars with internal combustion engines.
Over time, Tesla faced competition when Volkswagen and General Motors introduced cheaper SUVs. And Ford said it had 120,000 pre-orders for its EV F-150 truck, which is slated to hit the market next spring.
“We’re really seeing an explosion in consumer choice and it’s just getting started,” Harto said.
Automakers investing in the diversity of electric vehicles are certainly important, but we shouldn’t ignore how much government policy plays in developing transportation, said Paul Bledsoe, an adviser to the Department of Energy under President Barack Obama. Today he works for the think tank of the Progressive Policy Institute.
“Tax incentives are critical in getting people into the driver’s seat of electric vehicles,” said Bledsoe.
The Congressional Budget Vote Bill would add even more tax incentives, increasing the total possible credit to $ 12,500.
But for all this practicality, this shift in the auto industry is boiling down to what people want, according to Stephanie Brinley of consulting firm IHS Markit.
“Cars are still an emotional purchase. There’s a lot of choice out there and we’re definitely streamlining a lot for what we really want, ”she said.
What some people want now, she said, is to be comfortable about the environmental impact of their driving.