Plug-In Electric Cars Sales In U.S. Surpass 1 Million

OCT 6 2018 BY MARK KANE 45

1,000,000 plug-in electric cars sold in U.S.

Thanks to nearly 45,000 plug-in cars sold in September, cumulative sales of all plug-in models reached one million units. For mainstream consumers, electrification began in December 2010, when the first Nissan LEAFs and Chevrolet Volts were delivered – we tracked those numbers with passion every month!

Technically, our tally of mainstream models indicates almost 999,500 (since December 2010 through the end of September 2018), but first – it’s partially estimated (the error is within few thousands or 0.5% we believe) and secondly – there is are less than a few thousand road-legal plug-ins outside of our mainstream tracking (like the Tesla Roadster) that have been sold (since 2008).

In other words, we are sure that in the last days of September or first few days of October, the U.S. crossed 1 million plug-in electric cars! The government’s goal was to achieve 1 million by the end of 2015. Well, we did it by 2018.

This year sales already exceed 230,000 and should be close to 400,000 for the full year of 2018.

U.S. Plug-In Car Sales – September 2018

The most popular brands that together represents 70% of sales were:

  • Tesla – 273,773 (Model S + Model X + Model 3, without Roadster)
  • General Motors – 193,430 (Chevrolet Volt, Bolt EV, Spark EV plus Cadillac ELR & CT6 PHV)
  • Nissan – 125,513 (LEAF)
  • Ford – 110,130 (Fusion Energi, C-Max Energi, Focus Electric)

Hat Tip to Jim_NJ!!!

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45 Comments on "Plug-In Electric Cars Sales In U.S. Surpass 1 Million"

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About 200K of the predicted 400K EV’s sold in the U.S. will be Teslas.

US EV sales In 2018 will be closer to 350k. Tesla will have ~58% EV market share and over 80% BEV market share.

First million milestone reached in almost 8 years.

The milestone of 2 million Plug-Ins will be reached in Q4 2020.

I expect it to be second quarter 2020. Sales will not stay constant at last months pace of 45,000. The monthly rate will continue to increase.

I forgot to mention “at the latest”.

It is a pity that Tesla has no real competition at this point. A roomier Volt or a sexier Bolt with faster charging, or a 200+ mile Leaf, or one of the also rans could build a decent car at a decent price, but it isn’t happening.

Suppose we manage to average 50,000 EVs sold per month for the foreseeable future. It would take 1,000,000 / 50,000 = 20 months to sell the second million…

1 – Oct 2018
2 – Nov 2018
3 – Dec 2018

4 – Jan 2019
5 – Feb 2019
6 – Mar 2019
7 – Apr 2019
8 – May 2019
9 – Jun 2019
10 – Jul 2019
11 – Aug 2019
12 – Sep 2019
13 – Oct 2019
14 – Nov 2019
15 – Dec 2019

16 – Jan 2020
17 – Feb 2020
18 – Mar 2020
19 – Apr 2020
20 – May 2020

2nd quarter 2020 is when the 2nd million would be sold, with the 50K/month assumption. Looking at the chart above that Benz posted it would be difficult to believe that we would get to the 2nd million any sooner than that unless there is another major release of a BEV. Such a major release would have to be something like a Model Y, where the manufacturer of the vehicle is willing to produce it in high volumes.

It won’t happen on Tesla’s back alone, other manufacturers need to step up…so it won’t happen.

Model 3 is going to continue ramping higher than where it is right now. I don’t doubt Tesla’s ability to get to at least 100K/month US Model 3 sales once the base model is available. Maybe even significantly higher than that.

Remember – Tesla still can’t operate stores in half the US, and in several of the remaining states, they’re limited to only 5 stores in the entire state. Tesla doesn’t need to even think about expanding internationally – they can expand significantly in the US still.

100,000 per month? Seriously? That would be like one in 15 vehicles sold in the US… While there is certainly a place for optimism, this frankly sounds like crazy talk.

I prefer the term “wishful thinking”. Less of a negative slant, because I think all of us would like to see it happen. Preferably with other car makers stepping up and selling better cars at the same time.

It would also take another assembly factory for sure.

Another September achievement is that plug-ins exceeded 3 percent of sales in the U.S. — 3.12 percent of light vehicles and 3.03 percent of all vehicles. (Figured using InsideEVs totals for EVs and BEA figures for all motor vehicles IOW one of every 32 light vehicles sold came with a plug.

Adding that for just cars, the plug-in percentage is around 9 percent. (Not sure exactly because I don’t know for sure which EVs are considered light trucks.)

Tesla will have sold over a cumulative over a million worldwide by the end of 2019.

Possibly. If they can reach and maintain 7K Model 3 per week within 6 months of now (so early April), I think they’ll be able to reach 1M before the end of 2019. Not sure why someone down voted your saying that.

“error is within 1 million” … this might be a lost in translation error, since I know ‘million’ means different things in different places. I’m pretty sure you meant “error is within a thousand.”

I stumbled over this as well. I concluded that it *probably* meant to say that the one million mark is within the margin of error…

Yes, corrected!

Pathetic numbers.

Username checks out.
Pretty sure my dad shorts Tesla. If not, he certainly listens to Tesla shorts a lot (I know Fox is a major news source for him. I’d think the Made in America angle would be big for them.)

His shorts are stripped, and he wears a checked shirt, but from his pov, it’s the height of fashion.

From 1996-2003, the first modern generation EVs were manufactured by GM, Ford, Chrysler, Nissan, Honda, and Toyota. Of the ~5,000 of these vehicles that were made, around a thousand were saved from the crusher. Of those, a few hundred are still being used daily. Mostly the RAV4 EV, Toyota’s contribution to the California mandate to build a zero emission vehicle, this was considered the best of all except the GM EV1.

Add to those the ~2,500 Tesla Roadsters and see where the numbers end up.

Not all the Roadsters were sold in the US… But yeah, it’s probably a safe bet that there are enough to put it above the one million mark 🙂

About 1,800 were sold in the US, so is safe indeed to say that the 1 million milestone was achieved, counting from 2008, which really marks the beginning of the modern era of EVs.

Yes, we (all EV fans) would like to see this chart updated every month.

And it would be great to see such a chart from the European Plug-In sales as well.

Thanks to all the Inside EV’s staff members.

You mean quarterly

The horizontal axis is divided in quarters, but the colored graphs are in months.

Model-3 has overtaken Fusion Plugin and is trailing little behind Prius Plugin.
Officially Model-3 is 5th most sold Plugin in USA.

I predict the Model 3 will reach the 1st place in when March 2019 sales are published.
Approx. 200K Model 3s will be sold by then.

More than that. I’d say ~150,000 are likely by the end of this year. If Model 3 doesn’t overtake the Volt already this December (could be a close race), it will happen in January for sure.

150k by yearend and 200k in March 2019 both sound about right for US sales. Tesla will probably ship 25-30% of Model 3s overseas in Q1 of next year, both the offset a US slump (normal seasonality plus tax credit step-down) and to help keep margins high as the US shifts from LR-only to a SR/LR mix.

Excellent news. So USA officially joins 1 million plugin club.
Another news that we ignored is that Worldwide plugin sales thru 2018-08 crossed 1 million mark and so the cumulative Worldwide sales crossed 4 million mark.

China has crossed 1 million mark and is racing towards 2 million.
Europe has crossed 1 million mark.

Next news will be Worldwide sales of 5 million which will be a small milestone.

This gets interesting.

Other milestones missed by InsideEVs:
By the end of September global deliveries of the Model S reached the 250K milestone, and Model X passed the 100K mark (106K to be precise).
Just add up the figures of Tesla Q reports (the corresponding Wikipedia articles have the graphs/tables by quarter for both).

And keep track, the Model 3 will pass the 100K mark soon (84,235 by the end of September and counting)

Please attach a picture of Model-S/X/3 because those vehicles are the real heroes that pushed the sales to 1 million.

In cumulative sales, only Model S is among the top three. Model X is doing well, but it had a late start. Model 3 will soon soar past everything else — but it’s not there *yet*.

I added up the plug-in sales scorecard and got 1,003,528. I was confused by their comment about mainstream count of 999,500 so what? If it is not by a major successful manufacturer it doesn’t count?

Tesla has and will do it. All the others are compliance . Even GM with the Volt hybrid that should not even count. The 2 new factories by Tesla in China and Europe will be a huge part. In the mean time BYD is the leading EV automaker in the World selling BIG in China .

Tesla is the leading electric car maker now. They surpassed BYD both in monthly numbers and YTD.

Jim the Nissan Leaf is not a compliance car . It came out before the model s has led worldwide sales . Europe has a lot of Nissan leafs. Tesla doesn’t deserve all the credit . You notice inside ev’s have the leaf and volt in their picture.

All Tesla has to do is sell everything they make with zero prior vehicle and union history. Not enough credit has been given to GM for selling the amount they have with everything else they have to contend with.

Funny: we keep hearing from Tesla haters how they don’t know how to make cars, and the established makers can crush them any time… Yet here you are saying that not being an established maker is actually an advantage? Heretic! 😉

Nice to see that automobile industry moving towards Electric vehicles. According to a research from MarketsandMarkets, a revenue impact company, the US passenger car electric vehicles market is estimated to be 224, 958 units in 2018 and its projected to reach 3,200,000 units by 2025, at CAGR of 46.12%.

Just by a coincidence, China is about to pass the 2 million milestone (light-duty only), and by the end of September 2018 already had a stock of 2.21 million new energy vehicles, of which, 11% are heavy duty. Check the details here:
BTW, Europe passed the 1 million mark early in 2018, and cum sales should be around 1.2 million by September 2018
As per several sources, the global stock already passed 4 million and might reach 5 million by the end of 2018.