EV Sales Rise Again In December, With Tesla Leading The Pack


EV Sales

Tesla Model S and X

It comes as no surprise that plug-in EV sales were up again this December

With only 26 selling days, as opposed to last December’s 27, we weren’t quite sure if the 200,000 mark could be reached. Not to mention the new 2018 Nissan LEAF is still yet to arrive. The much-anticipated production ramp of the Tesla Model 3 is encouraging but still disappointing. That’s not to say that its 1,060 deliveries aren’t a huge leap and helped the number get closer to where it needed to go.

EV Sales

Chevrolet Bolt EV

For the month some ~26,107 plug-ins were sold, good for a 44% gain over the last month’s 17,178.  December’s results mark the 27th consecutive month of plug-in sales gains in America.

Cumulatively, 199,826 deliveries have been made for 2017, marking well over a 20% gain from last years 158,614.

In the absence of the new LEAF, the Chevrolet Bolt EV made the most of its time as the lone long range, affordable all-electric offering in America – selling a record 3,227 copies. However, it didn’t claim the top spot last month, as Tesla finished the year strong.

Both Model S and Model X sales weren’t as high as December of 2016 but still claimed the top two spots, with an estimated 4,975 and 3,300, respectively. This is obviously directly related to Model 3 production.

The Chevrolet Volt showed its second-best month of the year, with 1,937 deliveries, though that number pales in comparison to last December’s 3,691. Despite a better month for the Volt, the Toyota Prius Prime strongly secures the fourth spot overall with a whopping 2,420 in sales. Prior to last month, the Prime had yet to break the 2K mark.

BMW kicked butt again, with 2,725 sales to close out the year, while Ford fell short with 1,127. FCA even gave it a good run with 1,105 for the month.

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV finally arrived, selling a surprising 99 copies for the month. However, an even bigger surprise came by way of Honda, with its Clarity PHEV selling a whopping 898 units and its BEV deliveries totaling 527.

2017 Monthly Sales Chart For The Major Plug-In Automakers – *Estimated Tesla Sales Numbers – Reconciled on Quarterly Totals, ** Estimated (Based on State/Rebate Data and other reports), Credit to HybridCars.com for assistance on Hyundai/some BMW data.

Other Statistical Points of Interest from December 2017

Top Manufacturers Of Plug-In Vehicles:

EV Sales

Toyota Prius Prime

  1. Tesla* – 9,335
  2. General Motors – 5,208
  3. BMW Group –  2,725
  4. Toyota – 2,420
  5. Honda – 1,425

All-Electric Vehicle Market Share vs PHEV In December*

  1. BEV – 14,958
  2. PHEV – 11,149

(*) estimated due to unknown official Tesla sales in U.S. and BMW i3 REX vs. BEV sales.

New Year Highs Set In December By Model (previous 2017 high in brackets)

EV Sales

2018 Honda Clarity PHEV

  • Tesla Model S – 4,975 (4,860)
  • Tesla Model X – 3,300 (3,120)
  • Chevrolet Bolt EV – 3,227 (2,987)
  • Toyota Prius Prime – 2,420 (1,908)
  • Tesla Model 3* – 1,060 (345) 
  • Honda Clarity PHEV – 898 (5)
  • Honda Clarity BEV – 527 (459)
  • Volvo X90 T8 PHEV – 386 (265)
  • Volvo XC60 PHEV – 174 (100)
  • smart ED – 129 (123)
  • Mercedes-Benz B250e – 111 (87)
  • Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV – 99 (o)
  • Mercedes-Benz GLE550e – 82 (59)
  • BMW i8 – 80 (58)
  • Hyundai IONIQ Electric – 79 (75)
  • Volvo S90 T8 PHEV – 52 (32)
  • Cadillac CT6 Plug-In Hybrid  35 (29)

The full monthly recap by individual plug-in (all-time) can be found on our Monthly Scorecard here.

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159 Comments on "EV Sales Rise Again In December, With Tesla Leading The Pack"

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Shouldn’t the Volvo S90 get a shout-out in the new year highs list?

It’s funny that two discontinued models are there: the Spark EV and Mercedes B250e.

jim stack

right the Chevrolet Spark EV – 9 (7) is not made any more. Another bad decision by GM.

F150 Brian

Update on my post from the previous YE2017 sales article now that all data is in…

It is interesting to note that the growth is coming almost exclusively from new models (Model X is the only non-new model that added >1000 units).

For non-new models (models that have been on the market for 2 or more years and are still a going concern at the end of 2017), the growth in YOY sales is -11.33%
(down a little over 16K units).

The biggest losers are:
Fusion – down 6306
Volt – down 4390
Leaf – down 2776
Model S – down 1836
A3 e-Tron – down 1403
BMW i3 – down 1349
BMW i8 – down 1106


We all know Tesla focuses the last month of each quarter for US deliveries. While the S and X both outsold the Bolt in December, it’s interesting to note that the Bolt sold more copies in Q4 than any Tesla model.

Q4 sales
Bolt EV – 8,995
Model S – 7,430
Model X – 5,825

I believe that’s the first time in a long time a GM product beat a Tesla model (at least the S) in quarterly sales.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

IMHO, January, Bolt will still beat Tesla.

Just my Trollpinion.


Beat them at what? Not in numbers of vehicles sold.

(⌐■_■) Trollnonymous

Bolt will outsell TM3 for the month of Jan.

Talked to some floor workers and they said the ramp up is on the move and expect 1800+ pushed out the door for Jan.

Feb, Tesla should be at ~2700, per the folks I chatted with. Admittedly it’s what “their supervisor said they will ramp to…..”

This is the Fremont plant not the GF.
They said some other things but it was pure speculation on their part.

Robert Weekley

Still doing better with this new product, than our factory is with our new one! More than 2 Months now waiting on the Next 2 Major Components in our Build, and needed to move to the next production stage! We are scratching like Chickens in the dirt for jobs we can find to do! Tesla will likely beat us in steady builds, with their Semi, at the rate we are dealing with suppliers!

Robert Weekley
Just 1,800 for the whole month, or is that Production figures per week? We just heard that they had a Production Week with about 760 Model 3 Builds, as I understood! If they are ramping up, then reaching 1,800 per Week in January makes some sense; however, at a n average per week rate of 450, they would do 1,800 per Month, with No Ramp Up! That seems very low, if it was a per Month rate, plus, a big step back! Just 750 per Week, with No Ramp to a consistent 1,000 per Week (That end of year, & end of Week ‘Extrapolated’ rate), already makes 3,000 Model 3’s per Month! On the otherhand, if this was a Per Week Proction Rate Ramp Target for Month End, that could equal something like an average of ((760 + 1,800)/2) = 1,280 per Week Average! For simplicity sake, call it just 1,200 per week, to give a bit of buffer, and you already have 4,800 Model 3’s Made in January! With the 800+ in transit at Year End, and some of these ensing up in transit, it would lead to a reasonable man thinking that Model 3 January Sales could top… Read more »

“….pure speculation on their part”

And you’re not forwarding this juicy speculation because……. why? 🙂

Robb Stark

Jan 2018 Bolt sales will not beat Model 3 deliveries.

Bolt, as most BEVS,pulled demand from Jan/Feb to get Federal Credit now.

Model 3 has at least 200k unit demand to fill and Tesla is currently producing ~600 per week.

Chevy will not move more than 2k Bolts in Jan.


Agreed. I love our Bolt. Don’t want a Model 3. But, unless they screw up horribly, Tesla Model 3 will be the best selling EV, every month, for several years now. The game is Elon’s to lose.

Robert Weekley

What was it Elon said, just yesterday? “In the last seven working days of the quarter, we made 793 Model 3’s, and in the last few days, we hit a production rate on each of our manufacturing lines that extrapolates to over 1,000 Model 3’s per week.”

So, as he said, “In the last 7 days, they made 793 Model 3’s”, so figuring 750 per Week, going into January, as a per week Average, over the whole month, should be a pretty safe, and even a lowball rate! If next week and each week forward is 1,000+ units of Model 3, that averages about 900+ per week in Jan.

Should be possible to hit Sales figures of Model 3, in excess of 3,000 in January, what with the “and 860 Model 3 vehicles were in transit to customers at the end of the quarter.” Possibly, sales can exceed 3,500! Might even be possible to top 4,000!

Most likely, not under 750 x 4, or 3,000 sales this month!


There is a good chance for the Bolt to outsell the Model 3 in January.

A very small chance to do it again in February.

A tiny insignificant sliver of a chance in March.

And no chance from then on into perpetuity. 😛

I would be shocked if the S and X outsell the Bolt in 2018 though.

Robert Weekley
When you say, there is a ‘chance’ of Bolt EV sales outselling the Model 3 in January, I would be curious as to what, if any, math you have applied on that question? Is it based on the continuing increase of Bolt EV sales, month over month, using an average between worst and best increases? Was it comparing Volt January & February sales versus their December sales, over the last 2-4 years, and adjusting for Bolt Popularity over the Volt? Or was it extrapolated from Model X Slow ramp up and related to Model 3 as an extension of Model X Ramp Rate? Just wondering, because I put my thoughts with my Math, for the Model 3, above! In summary, I see a January Low of 3,000 sales for Model 3, a probable 3,500 units sold, and a slight possibility of 4,000 Model 3’s sold in January! So, if the Bolt EV is Going to hold onto its crown for January, it has some work to do! GM could include the CCS in the US Base Model, like they did in Canada! That would be a good step up! (Since each Model 3 includes access to Superchargers, it would be… Read more »

Bolt beats Tesla Model S and Tesla Model X in the US and should continue to do so, as it’s a much less expensive car. Each of those models stomps the Bolt worldwide, however.

Model 3 vs. Bolt race will get interesting this month and next.


+1 indeed!
Looking for a Tesla surprise to the upside, on the Model 3 in February.

Robert Weekley

Just making available the Standard Range Model 3, at $9,000 Less than the Long Range Model, will boost Model 3 sales! Even if the short range model still requires the Premium Package for a while yet!


Putting the Standard Range Model 3 into production certainly would not help sales in 2018, and quite possibly not in 2019 either. Demand for the TM3 exceeds supply by such a huge amount that a $9000 difference in price won’t affect sales at all, at least well into 2019 and quite possibly not until 2020.


Huh? That defies all logic.

Tesla already have about half a million customers waiting in line to take each and every car that comes off the production line.

Unless battery cells are the bottleneck, of which the LR version needs more.

It would help sales if this were a classic situation where ample supply is available and there is no waiting line. But we are talking about deliveries of cars that you can consider sold already.


At the current rate of production and demand (now that it is sold nationwide) the Bolt should outsell the X and the S for 2018 in the US.

F150 Brian

So whats your prediction for top 5 for 2018 (in-order)?

I’ll try:

Model 3
Prius Prime
Model X

(I think Model S sales will suffer once people believe they can get a Model 3 without a long wait and Model 3 has all options available)

William L.

Top 5 2018:
Model 3
Model S
Model X


The number one spot is obvious. 2-5 will all be pretty close. But I don’t think the Leaf will catch on until the 60 kWh 2019 model. The Bolt will outsell the S/X and Leaf this year I think.

Top 5:
1 Model 3 (duh)
2 Bolt
3 Model S
4 Leaf (Many people will wait for the 60 kWh model)
5 Model X

Top 10 in no order:
– Prius Prime (Still somewhat skeptical of Toyota. )
– Volt (Too much PHEV competition. Low demand for small cars)
– Ford Fusion Energi (Ford Fones it in)
– Pacifica Hybrid (surprisingly strong second half of the year)
– Clarity (off to a great start. I hope it continues!)


Where are all the German brands on this list (LOL!!)


Volkswagen still has a lock on the #1 spot for production of vaporware EVs. 😉

F150 Brian

For 2018, yes. But when they come, look out. They know how to dominate globally.

John Doe
That’s like asking: Where are the US brands? When looking at a general European car sales chart.. People prefere different brands, models, car types, handling, and they have to comply with the European CO2 limmits. e-Golf and i3 are the best selling EVs in Norway. The Bolt / Opel Ampera would for sure be at the top 5 too – if they sold it. The same goes for the Huyndai Ionic. Nissan Leaf will sell very well I think. They have many thousand customers on a waitinglist. I think they will be in the top 3 in 2018. Given the volume of EVs now, most rich people have bought their Tesla MS/MX. A lot of less wealthy people are waiting for the M3.. but it will take a while before they get the cars. Some have to wait until 2019/2020. It may still be enough to be top 3 in Norway.. I think so. It is only production volume that regulates this. Audi showed the latest e-tron concept just now in Norway – and 1000 people from the waiting list was invited. Several of them was on the M3 reservation list too, and many said: I’ll buy the first that… Read more »

1. Model 3
2. Bolt
3. Model S (I think they’ll lower the price)
4. Leaf
5. Clarity
6. Model X
7. Prius Prime
8. Pacifica Hybrid
9. Volt
10.Fusion Energi (if you’re buying a PHEV Ford it’ll have to be a Fusion so Ford’s number may go down while the Fusion’s go up)

George Bower

“I believe that’s the first time in a long time a GM product beat a Tesla model (at least the S) in quarterly sales.”

Just think how many EV’s GM could sell if they packaged that power train in a desirable body!!

Kind of makes you wonder why management didn’t do that in the first place:

The answer is obvious


What percent of the overall us car market do evs stand at now?


1%. Rounding error.


about 1.16%

Small, yes… but the largest it has ever been. And the Model 3 / Gen 2 Leaf are just getting started. 😀


good chance it approaches or even exceeds 3% in 2018


Not a chance. You would need 300,000 model 3.


Hmmm, yeah. It’s not going to jump from ~1.0% in 2016 and ~1.2% in 2017, to ~3% in 2018… altho we EV advocates would certainly love to see that happen!

Patience, Grasshopper.

John Doe

Add a fuel tax, where 75% goes to infrastructure like roads and bridge maintenance, 10% for building medium chargers at public buildings, and 15% for building chargers.

It would make EVs even more economical, improve the infrastructure that everybody use and improve the charger infrastructure.

At the same time, make a tax rule that says a company/store can get a tax reduction of 1,5 times the cost they have for adding chargers for their customers, and the same for adding solar panels on the roof, and some kind of energy storage solution..

But of course that would work too good, so there is no way this will happen.

But if they did, I would go all in, and buy stocks in EVs and solar companies for sure 🙂

. . . but think of all the jobs that would be created by all this.


It was 1.63% in December. (26,107 EV sales, 1,603,129 total light vehicle sales). Last December was about 1.47%.

If we imagine that next year is exactly the same, but allow the Leaf to end next year with Bolt-like numbers, and the Model 3 to “only” manage 2.5K/wk production/delivery (or about 10K for the month), Dec 2018 would come to about 2.4%. If Tesla manages 5K/wk for the Model 3 by December, it would edge *just* over 3%.

(Meanwhile, here in Aus, we’ll be lucky to consistently crack 0.1%.)

The next 5 years should be very interesting.


What are the manufacturers totals toward the 200,000 goal and incentive reduction. Many people will need to know regarding GM and Tesla during 2018.

Robert Weekley

It would seem, for January 2018, and going forward, InsideEVs could add a new page and chart, similar to the Monthly Tally, with ‘Total US PLugin Vehicle Sales Tallies, by Manufacture’, that would include All Tax Credit Qualifying Vehicles, for each Mfg!

GM: Volt + Spark + ELR + Volt 2 + Bolt + CT6 PHEV = ?

Ford: Fusuion energy + CMax energy + Focus EV = ?

Etc. Just try and update it by the 5th of each month!


Agree – I’ve added up the Tesla numbers on my own in the past – but it would be great to have a running total of US sales by manufacturer.

M Hovis

I wonder if we will be astounded by January 2018 the way we were with 11K in 2017? Lotta stuff still happening in the EV world….


November may have been the very last sub 20K sales month for EVs in the US….


527 people bought Clarity BEVs? Wow.

I think the November Clarity BEV/PHEV numbers are switched.

Jay Cole

You would think…but no, the Clarity PHEV was technically released December 1st, but a few trickled out the last day or so of November.

Robert Weekley

Is that why it seems to have ‘Exploded’ onto the scene? Going from 5 to 800+!


There have been a surprising number of posts on the new InsideEVs Forum about the Clarity PHEV, so it looks like someone is buying them!


Why are you surprised?

The lease number on the BEV is crazy good and PHEV version takes the Volt to the wood shed.


“PHEV version takes the Volt to the wood shed.”

Only if you don’t care about EV performance or EV range or driving dynamic.

it is basically for Honda Loyalist or anyone who wants a midsize PHEV but doesn’t really care about “ev-ness”…

Robert Weekley

Or someone who is OK with the Prius Prime, but wants a true 5 seats, headroom, and some extra 20 miles or so EV ramge?


Volt… evness. Give me a break.

Go get that model 3 and then talk about evness.


Clarity is weak PHEV. So weak that you might just treat it as a non plugin hybrid with higher MPG.

Sure, you are partial to it because you bought a Clarity already.


Not unless it’s in “Sport” mode when the system works to deliver maximum power. Otherwise, all the user reports that I’ve seen are saying that it’ll stay in EV mode under even pretty moderate demand as long as the driver doesn’t push past the designated point in the pedal. That means it offers the substantially same experience as the Volt in a car that is roomier and arguably more luxurious on the interior at basically the same price point as the Volt.


ModernMarvelFan said:

“Clarity is weak PHEV. So weak that you might just treat it as a non plugin hybrid with higher MPG.”

Are you sure you don’t have your PHEVs mixed up?

The Honda Clarity PHEV is rated at 47 miles of electric range by the EPA. I believe that puts it solidly into the #2 place, fairly close behind the Chevy Volt, and in fact a significantly longer EV range than the mere 35 miles the Volt had in its first year.

I can certainly see why so many people posting to the InsideEVs Forum are excited about their new Clarity PHEV, and hopefully that’s the start of a new trend toward PHEVs with significantly higher EV range!

Go Honda!

“Are you sure you don’t have your PHEVs mixed up?” Are you sure you know anything about the car beside just reading some numbers from internet page? Did you drive it? I am betting NO. Did you read the Spec sheet carefully? NO. Did you understand my point? NO. “The Honda Clarity PHEV is rated at 47 miles of electric range by the EPA. ” NO, it is rated at “Up to 47 miles” or 0-47miles. All WEAK PHEV is rated 0-xx miles. XX is what usually people think the EV range is. In this case, it is 0-47miles. Volt isn’t rated as 0-53 miles. It is solid 53miles. Because in EPA designated test, Volt doesn’t turn on the engine. Clarity PHEV does. In fact, if you step on it hard, the engine will come on and you can’t stay in EV only mode when any decent acceleration is required. “I can certainly see why so many people posting to the InsideEVs Forum are excited about their new Clarity PHEV, and hopefully that’s the start of a new trend toward PHEVs with significantly higher EV range!” Yes, I was excited about it. Saw in the car show. Sat in it… Read more »

Clarity PHEV sales WILL NEVER beat Volt in the US.

Because Honda has NO intentions to build more than minimally required.


Did you just use the anti-gm playbook?


1163 Clarity PHEV stock in the US says hello.


1163 in stock… Yeah. That is for nation wide release.

People were complaining about not having enough inventory when they have less than 4K in stock!!!


Wow, Clarity was released one month ago. Not one year. ONE MONTH AGO.


Honda says they expect to sell ~75k over three years, with the PHEV making up most of those sales. That sounds substantially similar to the number of Volts that Chevy is moving and I’m sure if demand proves to be exceptionally strong, Honda could increase production a bit more.


ModernMarvelFan said:

“Clarity PHEV sales WILL NEVER beat Volt in the US.”

I think GM fanboy MMF is whistling past the graveyard. Possibly the graveyard of the Volt model, if GM persists in refusing to redesign the car to make it larger or give it a flat floor. The Volt was viable when it didn’t have any competition in the segment of PHEVs with relatively good EV range, but now that it has real competition from the Clarity PHEV, GM may have to actually redesign it to be competitive.

I think PP (Tesla fan boy/GM hater who doesn’t know much about cars but likes to be an internet keyboard warrior who doesn’t even own EVs) is trying to make claims on something you don’t have clue about. (reminder, you don’t fire shots, I don’t fire shots. You fire a bullet, I return a bomb). Want to avoid fire, stay on topic without personal attacks or name calling. The Clarity PHEV looks great on paper. I was totally excited about it. The interior is much larger and far more comfortable. But once you drive it, all that pleasant hope are all faded. Sure, if you aren’t used to driving PHEV that are strong in EV performance, you might not care. But if you are used to drive BEVs or strong PHEV like the Volt, you will feel Clarity’s EV mode is just a longer version of the Prius Prime. So, effectively it is just a longer EV range version of the Prime in Honda clothes. Yes, it may sell decently, but I don’t think there is enough demand to split the volume 3 ways between Prime, Volt and Clarity. I also don’t think Honda is that serious about it. GM… Read more »

Add in the fact PP has never actually driven any of the cars, Tesla included, he fawns over like the fanboi he is. Lol

It’s like taking parenting advice from someone who’s never raised kids. PP is the EV fan version of Dr. Phil!


I completely agree with you. We traded our ’07 Prius for a ’17 Volt when they first came out. We love it! After leasing a Leaf for a few years, we started to notice the Prius’ lackluster performance more so we had no regrets trading it in for the Volt. Solid car! Literally the best car I’ve ever owned with performance second only to the Mazda 3 I used to own!

The Prime really is just a super hybrid, not a PHEV.


One important point is that they are selling in cars when the Big 3 sold 650k fewer cars last year. If you take out light trucks, which account for 60% of light duty vehicle sales, Tesla bucking that trend looks even better.


The Volt is unofficially dead.

Texas FFE

Don’t count on it. John Q Public is still very afraid of electric vehicles and will be until the prices come down and the charging infrastructure drastically improves. As people switch over from smokers they are going to want to get there feet wet with PHEVs before they jump all the way into a BEV.

Robert Weekley

I think that Fixing the charging at Home Challenge for Tenants (Renters), Condos & Apartment Buildings, is a major element to enticing large numbers of people to go electric!

Next, better reliability, redundancy, and visability of EV Charging Stations, along with Frequency, Charging speed, and cost of public charging, are all elements that are already important, and will still be so even if a 200 mile range EV only cost $15,000!

Robert Weekley

Even Volt 2 still charges at slower than typical L2 Public Charging Speeds (3.6 kW, but public L2 is largely at 6.6 kW!), and also can’t use CCS, either!

Maybe that is an element that loses it a bunch of sales! It should be able to at least charge on L2 as fast as the Bolt EV by now!

I don’t see why a 16 kWh iMiEV battery could use 50 kW DC Charging, but the 18.4 kWh Volt Battery can’t?


Majority people who buy PHEV doesn’t really care about L2 charging rate anyway..

They have an onboard DCFC called ENGINE!


So much for evness. Let’s burn gas. Maybe if the volt didn’t have those pitiful onboard charging rate, it would have more evness.


You are confusing the EV ness in operation vs. the L2 charging speed.

Nobody is expecting to sit at L2 station for hours to extend their range. L2 stations are home/work based charging and opportunity charging. Volt’s 3.6kW charging speed is already faster than many early BEV’s 3.3kW charging speed.

The marginal improvement is rarely needed with its already superior 53 miles of EV range.

Don’t be bitter, you bought an ugly Clarity. =) But I will cut you some slacks because it was so cheap.


How dare you compare your tiny Volt to my glorious Clarity!

My 18″ to your 17″
My 6.6kW charger to your puny 3.2kW
My hugely 25kWh battery to your 16kWh (10.2 kWh usable)
My massive orgy filled backseat to your so called backseat prison.
My H badge (which serves a purpose) to your shameful yellow bowtie


It is okay that I don’t have to look at that ugly Clarity much when I only see the front of it shrinking inside of my rear view mirror when I leave it in the dust.. =)


Clarity certainly dominates the Volt in FUGLINESS, I’ll agree to that. Lol


The PHEV buyers don’t care, but it’s really annoying for us BEV drivers who don’t have a charger at home and whose car doesn’t have a DCFC port either. There are few things that are more annoying than arriving at a charger in need of a charge only to at best, get the power split by someone in a Volt (or other PHEV) who could almost certainly get home without a charge.


Apparently you are utterly blind to the irony of complaining about PHEV drivers supposedly hogging public chargers, when it’s you who is doing far more hogging of public infrastructure, by persisting in driving a BEV when you can’t even charge it at home.

And you make it even worse because you can’t even DC fast charge your car, which means your car is tying up public chargers for even more hours per week! That is far more than your fair share.

I actually hope you’re just an EV hater who is punking us by merely pretending to have a sense of entitlement so strong it blinds him to the selfishness of his own actions. They say “It takes all kinds to make a world”, but your kind we can easily do without.


Ok, and here I was thinking that a PHEV actually charging was a good thing….

Instead, many PHEV’s in The Netherlands were sort-of ‘pushed down our throats’ by much too favourable tax rules around company cars. Since it is the company footing the petrol bill, many, if not most, PHEV drivers here never charge and drive around on petrol 100% of the time. The excuse is that they don’t have a charger nearby. Even if they park the car on their own property, they didn’t get a charger installed. The low tax was the only consideration.

“How to undermining public support for electric cars – part 1”.

Texas FFE

I think you’re very wrong. People drive PHEVs because they want an electric car but don’t trust the charging infrastructure. I drove my Fusion Energi to Colorado last week and tried to use some public chargers but got sick of waiting at the first charging stop (not to mention it was 5 degrees F outside, 5 AM in the morning and all the stories were closed).

I kept thinking the Outlander has a CHAdeMO charging port. I thought if I had an Outlander I could pick up a few quick charges and still drive through the areas between Texas and Colorado where public chargers are nonexistent. I am not planning on buying an Outlander but I can definitely see the attraction of having DCFC capabilities on a PHEV.


The Volt already has quick charging, it’s called a gas station. There’s no real need to add the expense of quick charging to a PHEV because it will literally never end up being used. In a situation where you really need more charge it makes sense to instead fall back on the gas engine you’re carting around all the time.

That being said, the very slow L2 charge of the Volt sucks and it’s one of the things I don’t like about the car. In a situation where you do decide to plug in to a public charger it sucks to either get hardly any charge or have to tie it up for twice as long as another car would. Especially when those other cars might be more in need of the charger.


Let’s keep in mind that the Bolt Halo car effect, is actually Volt seller, where charging infrastructure is still spotty, and people are just getting their EV toes wet.

The Prius Prime and Honda PHEV Clarity, are also going to be cross shopped by some who may gravitate torwards the Volt, to some small degree. If Chevy keeps the Volt price point competitive, the Volt may be a value Purchase/ Lease by some shoppers.

Robert Weekley

What would be the Engineering challenges to put the Volt 2 Drivetrain, and Front Seats, in a Bolt, with a 8-10 Gallon Gas tank, 40 kWh worth of Flat Bolt EV Battery, to make a Bolt EREV?

Such a package, would, in my view, be better than the i3 Rex (4 normal doors, at least!), give 150 EV Miles, and about 340+ Gas Miles, solve Volt Headroom Challenges, especially for back seat passengers, and give more space to Volt buyers, as well!


“Let’s keep in mind that the Bolt Halo car effect…”

This is a use of the term “halo car” with which I am not familiar! 😉

A halo vehicle (or halo model) in automobile marketing is one designed and marketed to showcase the talents and resources of the manufacturers and to promote sales of other vehicles within a marque. Car companies often design a special vehicle, usually a luxury or sports model, with the hope that customers will come to dealerships to see it, but will buy other more practical vehicles instead. The classic case is the Chevrolet Corvette, which changed the image of Chevrolet of the 1950s from one of mainstream practicality to desirable sportiness. Such models are intended to shine a positive light on the manufacturer, and generate a positive buzz in the press and among consumers.



Look at the numbers. The Prime has taken majority of Volt sales. You got all favors of PHEV coming. Why would any sane person buy a Volt being discontinued.

In 2018
Prime (#1 PHEV)
Clarity (PHEV Malibu)
Outlander (PHEV equinox)
Pacifica (PHEV Traverse)
Ioniq (PHEV Cruze)
Niro (PHEV Saturn)


Because the Volt is still the only one that has good all-electric range and performance. All of the others you mentioned have short battery range, are slow, and/or rely on the engine for heavy acceleration.

So, if the electric part of the car is important to you, than the Volt is the best choice. But, if you need a minivan or SUV, then maybe one of the others makes sense.

Said another way, the Volt is the only EREV. The rest are PHEVs.


If electric is important, you get a BEV, period!

Paul Stoller

You don’t speak for all of us.


Neither does CCIE.

The first-person reports from Clarity PHEV drivers posted to the InsideEVs Forum certainly suggest the car is at least as good a daily driver as the Volt, and possibly better. For example, the Clarity PHEV has a “detent” position in the accelerator pedal travel, to let the driver know that he’ll engage the ICEngine if he accelerates past that point. That allows the driver to make an informed choice about using gasoline or not; a choice which the Volt, with its seamless transition between EV mode and gasmobile mode, does not offer!

There is more than one way to skin a cat… or to engineer a well-designed PHEV.


John Q. Public isn’t going to give a single care about AER, especially if even with sporadic engine use, they end up drastically slashing their fuel bills via charging.


Until true fast charging stations are available everywhere, PHEVs will continue to fill a requirement for many people. So, GM will put Voltec in other vehicles even if the Volt itself is discontinued.

And by fast, I mean recharge a 100kwh battery from 10-90% in 10 minutes. Not the BS we have now. No normal people will tolerate that.


They tried with the Malibu, ELR and CT6. All blockbuster hits.


No, I don’t think GM really tried with the Caddy ELR. Didn’t try at all. I’m not convinced it was anything more than a test market car; certainly not designed to sell in large numbers, especially not at the initial highly inflated price!

And the other two models you mention are not true switch-hitters like the Volt; they don’t perform equally well as a gasmobile and an EV, as the Volt does.

Arguably the Clarity PHEV runs right over the CT6 and the Malibu PHEV, and the ELR isn’t even in the race.

Chester Koenig

“No normal people will tolerate that.”

And how do you know that, exactly?


It’s a well-documented fact that in general, Americans won’t voluntarily wait for more than 15 minutes for anything. If forced to, they get angry and restless.

He is absolutely right; the average American driver is not going to buy a car that requires 30 to 45 minutes wait time to recharge when on a road trip. You and I can see the logical argument that they would actually save time over the space of a year, by not having to waste time going to the gas station to fill up; but logical arguments rarely convince people when it comes to choosing a car to buy.

If we want to see gasmobiles become extinct, then we really do need a DCFC charge time of 12 minutes or less, and hopefully less than 10 minutes.



Adding 50 kWh of fast-charge, going up to 80% SOC (in a 75+ kWh battery) in 15 minutes or less, will be groundbreaking. It needs to be implemented in an affordable (price equivalent to a similar ICE vehicle) EV, that is not subsidized by any state of federal incentives. Then there will be little room for arguement, from the Pro Vroom-Vroom fossil fuel crowd.


I suspect part of the Dec uptick was due to the potential of the EV tax credit cancellation. In any case, it was a good year and will be interesting to see how Tesla model 3 scales to their 400k reservations.


20% gain from 2016 to 2017 is disappointing. Europe and china are growing 50%+ yoy.

Hoping for much better in 2018. If the model 3 production starts humming should easily hit 50% next year. Hopefully much more with new leaf, Honda clarity, and a few other new models

F150 Brian

Agree that US is falling behind in EV adoption – 20% is terrible given the number of options, rebates and general wealth of the population.

With the Model 3, new Leaf, and potential from other new(ish) models, I will be very surprised if there is less than 100% growth from 2017 to 2018. Might even hit 1/2 million.


Agree Brian. 500K sales next year is a possibility if the Model 3 finally gets made in real numbers…..Even at 5k/week that’s a significant to get to 500k

John Doe
2018 should be a good EV year in the US. All cars Tesla can ship will be sold. In the US you can buy a really cheap ICE car, with fairly cheap maintenance (compared to Europe at least), and with cheap fuel (if you don’t count the Middle East, Venezuela and a few other places). If you need a new car, a used version of this car is dirt cheap. Used EVs cost more, until they have a battery that is dead. Then they are very cheap. There has been a growing population with lower income in the US since the early 80s, since the middle class is slowly getting smaller and smaller. Outsourcing has been a major problem for the US, and then you have Walmart that sells mostly Chinese stuff. Shops in “main street” in cities have been outcompeted by Walmart, and they were the one that sold US made products, and paid normal wages for their employees. I remember when the shift started. I have a lot of familiy in the US and Canada, that I visit from time to time, and I remember when souvenirs suddenly was made in Hong Kong, and later they have all… Read more »

I think its quite remarkable that we have 20% growth in a year where sustainability and moral guidance has all but disappeared. What would the numbers have been if those in positions of power were supportive of new technology?


You mean if the felon had beat the boor? I don’t think it would have changed these numbers a bit.

Paul Stoller

The felon won.


If anything, the dunce winning probably encouraged more people to buy BEVs to stick it in his eye and those of the oil industry cronies.

Ross Pursifull

May we see the sales graph in terms of market share once more?

(E.g. Sales broke the 1% market share.)


I was surprised BMW didn’t get a year-end kicker for more models, but I guess the smaller-batteried weaker plug-ins don’t get as big a tax credit so it makes sense.

Eric Cote

Oh man, we were so close to breaking 200k sales for the year!

I blame Nissan’s supply misalignment! 🙂


How about going after Mitsubishi and their delay tactics on the PHEV Outlander here in North America. Those sales would have potentially put us over the 200K mark.


I blame Hyundai/Kia. They delivered twice as many Ioniq EVs in The NLs as in CA last year and while both the Ioniq PHEV and Niro PHEV were supposed to hit showrooms in time for Christmas, that didn’t happen. Of course, as we now know based on the Ioniq EV, they’re liable to grossly underestimate demand (especially with the Ioniq PHEV that comes out to around $21k after the federal incentive and even lower when considering state rebates), so it’s possible that even if they had formally been released, not that many would’ve ultimately been delivered. But every little bit counts and even a month of 75 units for each model would’ve breached the 200k mark.


I blame Elon. If he had sold just *1 PERCENT* of his ridiculous goal of up to 200k Model 3’s in 2017, we would have hit the 200k mark in overall plug-in sales. But he couldn’t even deliver 1 friggin’ percent of his goal. *sigh*

William L.

By end of 2018, Tesla Model 3 alone has the potential to outsell all EV sold in 2017 combined


Betting 400k plugins to be sold in the US in 2018. The mass adoption begins! That is if Nissan gets the new LEAFs to dealers and Tesla continues their 3 ramp.

Robert Weekley

Can we put a Volt 2 Drivetrain in a LEAF 2, Add a 8 Gallon fuel tank, and see how that sells?


It won’t fit.

Certainly not with liquid cooling which is “requirement” for PHEV.


I think you basically described the upcoming Voltec-based Buick, didn’t you?

Yeah, let’s see how that sells. Hopefully it will sell better than the average Buick! I haven’t noticed Buicks appearing on any list of best-selling cars of late.

Texas FFE

I was disappointed in 2017 EV sales and I don’t expect EV sales to get much better in 2018. Prices are still too high and the political environment is not very supportive. The only real bright spot I see is that we have a couple of long range BEV SUVs coming out within the next few years, they should shake things up a little.


As always, absolutely out of touch with reality 🙂

The number for 2018 will be between 400K and 500K for the US


“The number for 2018 will be between 400K and 500K for the US”

Don’t bet your life on it.

If Model 3 ships fast, then it will take away some of other PEV sales.

I think 350K is possible or it may reach 400K. No way 500K.

Also, once the $7500 is gone, it will damp some of the Bolt/LEAF/Model S sales.


I doubt GM is going to trigger their wind down before at least Q318, which means that that the credit will apply all the way through the end of the year. That means that GM has at least another year where they can milk the ~$38k MSRP. And for Nissan to trigger their wind down, they have to have the most-sold non-Tesla EV model in a single year which I would question the viability of.


PEV sales reached very nearly 200,000 in the U.S. alone this year, and that was with a measly ~1772 Tesla Model 3’s. The Model 3 only needs to reach a production of 200,000 next year to double this year’s PEV sales, even without any increase from any other model.

Now, it may be overly optimistic to think that Tesla will actually manage to deliver 200,000 TM3’s next year, following a disastrous first two quarters of production. But heck, I’m the eternal optimist when it comes to the EV revolution accelerating, so I think it’s entirely possible that will happen!

Yeah, I think we could easily see a 100% increase in U.S. PEV sales next year.

Up the EV revolution!


I think Tesla will be doing well if they get production on the Model 3 up to 100K next year. Even if the Bolt sells 45K and the Leaf does 30K and other EVS keep growing, I think an increase of 100% is a challenging. I think 50% is more likely.

Obviously 100% theoretically could happen if Model 3 production really ramps up, but I wouldn’t count on it.

Timothy Hughbanks

I think that the “mere” 20% gain is a consequence of the Model 3 suppressing 2017 sales. There are a whole lot of BEV buyers out there just waiting for the Model 3 who, in it’s absence, might have purchased something else (e.g. the unfortunately ugly Bolt) if they weren’t waiting for a Model 3.

Robert Weekley

Still wondering if GM could just go for it, and make a 40 kWh Bolt EREV, with an 8-10 Gallon Gas Tank?


The Bolt EREV version of an BMW i3REx? That would be a an interesting addition to the Volt as it’s sales are diminishing.


No reason for another small sized PHEV.

If GM does another PHEV, it should make an Equinox/Envision/Trax/Encore version of the Volt!

it would be hot seller!!!!

Paul Stoller

EREV Colorado please!


The Bolt, like the Model 3, is production constrained (if less so). You can’t sell something that doesn’t exist.

Actually with the Leaf practical taking the 4th quarter off, and depressed the rest of the year due to the new model coming and the Model 3 not really arriving in any real numbers, I think we’re lucky 2017 was as good as it was.

Get Real

LMFAO, serial anti-Tesla troll and Fudster Texas FFUD is as delusional as the Trumpster is with his Russia problem here by trying to wish away the Model 3 whose US sales will be at least DOUBLE of all other PEVS combined in 2018.

Texas FFE

I’m delusional? Aren’t you the one that criticized anyone that suggested the Model 3 would be late? You’re the one with the poor batting average.


“won’t be much better”

Mean time, in the real world:
– Model 3 production ramping up
– 40 kWh leaf deliveries starting
– Outlander PHEV deliveries starting (finally!)
– Bolt sales gradually increasing
– Clarity EV/PHEV available for the whole year (and if December is any indication, it seems to be popular!)
– The Ioniq has much potential, but production restricted. Maybe Hyundai sorts things out.

In short, over the past year, the market was held back by supply constraints.

Texas FFE

I had high hopes for 2017 but all I saw was one disappointment after another. I have no reason to believe that 2018 won’t also be filled with disappointments. We are living an EV evolution, not an EV revolution.

Texas FFE
Why don’t you guys take a realistic look at the numbers instead making off hand remarks? Everyone is expecting the Model 3 to make up the numbers but 5000 per week production is not expected to start until June so there’s no chance more than 100,000 Model 3s will get built before the first half of 2018. I think Tesla will be very lucky even to produce 150,000 Model 3s in 2018 and many of those will not go to the United States. There will be a few other new entrants into the EV market but their sales will likely eat into the market share of existing EV models. Better DCFC charging infrastructure could improve sales but I expect the installation of new DCFC chargers to be slow in 2018, especially in non-compliance states. The EV market is actually growing at a phenomenal rate but it’s a dog eat dog world out there and unless the United State government really steps up (not happening) all we can expect is to get thrown a few bones. I’m looking at 2020 as the real breakout year. By 2020 the DCFC infrastructure should be a lot better and there should be many more… Read more »
Wisconsin Guy

I was wondering if you guys take donations? I think that the primary data collection you do here is fantastic.


174 units short of 200K?

Well, it is LEAF/Model3/Volt’s fault for missing that mark. =)

Robert Weekley

Or, the Dealership Business Model!


Was that one of the Model 3 production bottlenecks? The dealership model?


With the total that close to the 200,000 mark, you can point the finger of “blame” at just about anything selling in better than mere compliance numbers! So just put all the blame on the one among the top 25 PEVs that you like the least. 😉

But it’s only humans who show a preference for nice big round base 10 numbers. The universe isn’t at all biased in favor of base 10; rather the reverse.

Don Zenga

Production ramp up is not an easy thing. In the last week of December when there is 1 day holiday and many employees tend to take few more days as vacation; the workers, engineers and managers in Tesla stood their ground like a soldier defending their land to produce as many vehicles as possible for their own future, their customers and the Planet Earth.

My sincere appreciation to everyone in Tesla who were able to produce 1500 + vehicles and sell more than 1000 + of them in 1 month.

Looking from another angle, Model-3 sales of 1,060 is just 33 lower than Cadillac-ATS sales of 1,093 last month. ATS sales declined nearly 1,200 units from 2016-12 sales of 2,292 units. And ATS has both Sedan and Coupe version with both Regular (4 cylinder) and V (6 cylinder) versions.

Jean-François Morissette

It was a good month, but it wasn’t at all the monster month we had in mind at the beginning of the year…

I though it could be a 40k month, with the new LEAF, the Model 3, the Outlander PHEV, the Bolt selling more, etc. Now let’s hope we will see that a lot in 2018!


Could you add a running total by manufacturer?


@Jay Cole
Would you please stop using the bold font in the table – the 6, 8, 9, and 0 are hard to differentiate.

Nice job on the monthly report


If you’re using a device that is larger than a cell phone, then just click on the table to see an expanded version. It’s much easier to read the numbers that way!

(And I can kick myself for how long it took me to notice that.)



The font used in the table has a legibility challenge.


Hyundai’s inability to deliver Ioniq EVs was a huge disappointment of the year. It’s not that they aren’t making them because it’s apparently the top-selling EV in Korea and the second-best selling EV in The NLs, where they delivered about twice as many as they delivered here in California in 2017 even though our population is double that of the Dutch. The fact that they couldn’t even muster a triple-digit effort for the end of the year is really a travesty.



Okay, it’s entirely Hyundai’s fault that we Americans fell a wee bit short of buying 200,000 PEVs this year. 😉


It seems like your Pacifica PHEV numbers are on the low side. According to StatsCan, exports of “870360 – Motor vehicles, spark ignition internal combustion reciprocating piston engine and electric motor charged by external source”, vehicle exports to the US in that category are 5,455 units for the year up to and including November.


As far as I know the Pacifica is the only vehicle fitting that description being exported from Canada. I understand that not all vehicles that cross the border are sold immediately and that some vehicles sit on lots etc for a while but your annual figure is about 1,000 units short of the official export figure for the year which may or may not represent vehicles sitting on lots but that doesn’t include exports for December yet which will boost that number higher.