Cumulative US Plug-In Electric Vehicle Sales – Model By Model Breakdown With Market Share Data


“Any way you SLICE it, the growing number of Plug-In Vehicles looks SWELL!”

Tweets InsideEVs contributor Mark Larsen who forwarded these two representations of U.S. plug-in electric vehicle sales.

Above you’ll see cumulative model-by-model U.S. sales to date (through end of August using sales figures obtained via InsideEVs) and market share for individual plug-in electric models (again, using InsideEVs sales data).

To check out a recap of August 2014′s plug-in sales, and the year-to-date chart – go here.

For a look at some of InsideEVs’ previously published works with graphical contributions from Larsen, check out the links below.

US Electric Vehicle Market Share – Model By Model Breakdown

Nissan LEAF Versus Chevy Volt – Cumulative Sales Graph With Exponential Curve

Cumulative Plug-In Electric Vehicle Sales With Model-By-Model Breakdown For US – Behold Mount “EV”erest

*For more of Mark Larsen’s electric vehicle related works, check out his website here.

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18 Comments on "Cumulative US Plug-In Electric Vehicle Sales – Model By Model Breakdown With Market Share Data"

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As the first graph shows, the number of plug-ins in US at the end of August was very near to 250,000 (248,924, if I counted right, from InsideEVs sales charts).
So, by now, a quarter million has been past!
Time to celebrate?!!!

To me, the conclusion is that those who are first to market get the most market share, hence the 53% of the market occupied by the Volt and the Leaf.

Well, first to market is a big advantage, but the LEAF and Volt also have a big availability advantage. Outside of CA and a few other CARB states you’ll find it very difficult to obtain a plug-in except the Volt, LEAF, Tesla, or one of the two Ford Energi models. With a lot of searching you may find a Focus Electric, a Smart EV, or (so rumor has it) a 2014 i-Miev.

There was a brief period in early 2013 when the Focus Electric was widely available, but with the launch of the 2013 LEAFs (with lower prices and overall better features) followed by the numerous problems with FFEs and combined with Ford giving up marketing the car they quickly became very scarce.

Thus, it’s not surprising that the LEAF has continued to gain ground – no direct competitor in most places – while the Volt has seen sales erode since the Energi models (which should be combined when comparing manufacturer PHEV sales) are direct competitors.

The Prius Plug-in’s success should be treated as an outlier. This is due primarily to Californians who want a Prius or similar in order to get the HOV lane sticker.

The VOLT also gets the HOV sticker in CA and why I preferred it to a foreign car.

Is it just me, or does it look like the growth has gone from exponential to linear, sometime around January 2013?

It will be very interesting to see these numbers in a few more years, when all the major players are on their next generation. Hold on to your seats, this is going to get interesting!

Make adjustments for seasonal factors and tesla and pip were in short supply and growth is still exponential. Take also in to account the numbers are cumulative not month to month, so anything better than a flat line signals growth.

It never was exponential. A cumulative sales graph adds a factor, so a linear sales increase becomes a quadratic cumulative sales increase, or a quadratic becomes a cumulative cubic. What we appear to have here is a roughly linear sales increase, with wide fluctuations.

A guess we know who to cheat off of in trig.
This is not a problem for a mathematician. It is a problem for an actuary (glorified statistician). An actuary’s job is to take a series of data points factor out anomalies and make future projections(pull numbers out of his a##)
To make it simple your flat linear theory does not take in to account that historically the last 4 months of the year are some of the busiest.

I think you are both missing my point, getting hung up on technicalities.

It visually looks like the cumulative sales are increasing about linearly. The incremental (i.e. new) sales are derivative (slope) of the cumulative sales. Plotted this way, it seems that growth in new sales has stalled, and they are roughly the same number every month. Looking at the sales score card, this clearly isn’t the case, however, the rate of growth seems to be slowing down.

Tesla, Toyota and Ford have all made big inroads into a market, which seemed to have been cornered by GM and Nissan due to their early entries into this segment. Competition will help everyone to garner more interest from the public, improve the products, and the overall credibility of all plug-ins. The rising tide will lift all boats. Isn’t it surprising that Nissan keeps breaking all sales records with the LEAF, yet the overall market share seems to be quite a bit lower now than it was in 2012?

Yep, that just demonstrates the size of the market is growing faster than Nissan’s sales. Pretty sweet.


You have to supply a non cumulating graph as well to make things clearer. And add years on the x axis in addition to months.

37K to 250K in two years means an EV population growth of 8%pm. At that clip we ar looking at 649K in a year’s time,1,689K EV’s in two years. Thats 1.7 Million. Another 2 years, 11.4 million! If only I had an investment that performed like this! Of course as with investments past returns are not necessarily indicative of future returns, but at least shows the possibility if trends continue.

Interesting… the mix (these are just US numbers) is ~55% PHEV and 45% BEV.
Other countries are much more heavily towards BEV.

It seems to me what has been fueling the Prius plug in has been getting a sticker to drive the vehicle in California HOV lanes. It is one of the most affordable plug in but with only a 6 mile continuous range in electric is almost worthless. That is unless it allows you to drive without a buddy in the HOV lanes. If the requirements change for HOV lanes we will likely see the sales of Prius plug in drop a bunch. Time will tell. I expect Tesla and Ford to overtake Toyota in plug in sales very soon.

Toyota has publicly stated that EV is not going to be in their mix. I’m thinking that makes PiP a short-timer as it is their only plug-in vehicle.

No EVs is one thing, but I for one wish they would offer the plug-in treatment for the entire Prius family. Then double down on the electric range to double digits. That could be done inexpensively (if they only wanted to do it), and would have a huge impact.