Top Electric Car & Electrification Trends Of 2018
It’s electric USA!
Major auto manufacturers and industry analysts are bullish on EVs, and there’s good reason why: 2018 turned out to be a major year for EV progress in the US.
In a few decades, when we get behind the wheel of a car, call an Uber, receive an Ikea delivery, or put our school kids on the bus, chances are it’ll be electric.
Today, there are more than 1 million EVs on the road in the US, and the Edison Electric Institute and Institute for Electric Innovation estimate that the next million EVs will hit the road in less than three years, and reach 18 million by 2030.
Flip through the slides above to find out what we think were the Top 4 electrification trends of 2018.
4. We’re all in for EVs
2018 also saw major progress from utilities, states and cities to advance transportation electrification:
Utility commissions in three states (NY, WA and NV) approved $7 million in EV infrastructure projects in 2018, bringing the total planned utility investments in EV-related projects to $1.1 billion in 15 states as of 2012, according to data compiled by AtlasEVHub.
Governors from 17 states joined together to pledge $1.4 billion of VW settlement funds to electrification, including CT, VA, NC and MN.
26 states, cities, regions and businesses committed to reach 100 percent zero emission vehicle targets by 2050 as part of "The ZEV Challenge". New US signatories include: California, New York City, Los Angeles and Pittsburgh.
California Governor Brown signed a suite of bills to advance zero emission vehicles. The bills cover ride hailing, heavy duty trucks, school buses, charging, incentives and other programs.
35 California mayors committed to a proposal to transition all of the state’s transit buses to electric.
3. It’s not just about cars
When we think of EVs, we often think of cars. But 2018 saw major expansion of electrified buses, public fleets, bikes, scooters and ride-sharing programs.
A dozen of the largest city, regional, and state governments signed on to CALSTART’s “Drive to Zero” pledge with truck manufacturers and technology companies to accelerate the deployment of zero and near-zero emission buses and trucks.
Proterra announced that they will enter the school bus manufacturing market through a partnership with Daimler. The buses will be built in Greenville, SC.
IKEA committed to use EVs for last mile home deliveries in Los Angeles and New York by 2020. IKEA also committed to transition all its last mile home deliveries to EV or other zero-emission transport by 2025, and provide access to charging stations at IKEA stores, offices and distribution centers in 30 markets globally by 2020.
UPS continued its transition to electric vehicles and signed on for 1,000 more e-delivery trucks from Midwest-based Workhorse.
Organic food maker Clif Bar & Company committed to electrifying its vehicle fleet by 2030 and installing charging points at all its offices and bakeries, currently located in six different states (CA, OH, AR, MN, IN and ID). The company has also been offering its employees financial incentives ($6,500) to purchase EVs and hybrids. More than third of its 1,200 employees – over 450 – have taken up the opportunity so far.
Lyft committed all rides from now on to be carbon neutral. The more shared rides and clean vehicles on the platform, the fewer carbon offsets Lyft will need to purchase.
Uber, not to be outdone, committed to invest in technologies that reduce the carbon intensity of its ride-share service, such as electric vehicle initiatives and expanding e-bikes and e-scooters and pooled ride services in more than 20 cities across three continents.
Zoox, a rideshare start-up, committed its entire future vehicle fleet (target launch in 2020) to be 100 percent battery electric.
2. Big leaps forward for EV charging
It’s the age-old question, refreshed for an electric world: what comes first, the EVs or the charging station? Betting on the notion that we need both, private companies, utilities and nonprofits made major progress in expanding access to charging for EV drivers in 2018:
ChargePoint (2.5M) and EVBox (1M) announced they would be installing 3.5 million charging points by 2025.
Southern California Edison committed to pursuing over 50,000 EV charging ports by 2025.
National Grid announced plans to pursue 10,000 public charging ports by 2025 in MA, NY and RI.
Ameren announced plans to install 1,200 charging stations in MO.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced plans to invest $14 million into charging infrastructure throughout VA over three years.
Electrify America announced plans to spend $200 million more deploying EV charging stations and educating the public about EV options. The company intends to spend $2 billion over 10 years to promote EV adoption around the U.S.
Already today, there are nearly 60,000 charging points across the US, a 24% growth over 2017, according to data compiled by AtlasEVHub.
1. Expansion/growth in EV offerings & sales
There are more makes and models of EVs on the road today than ever before, with even more to come and more affordable options:
All told, there are already more than 1 million electric cars and more than 600 electric buses on U.S. roads as of October 2018.
Sales of electric cars grew throughout the year once again in 2018.
Major automakers (such as Subaru, Ford, Audi, VW and Mazda) and startups (such as Michigan-based Rivian) announced plans to roll out dozens of new models of electric vehicles starting in 2018, including one under $24K and an all-electric pickup truck.
The market for used EVs is growing, as is the availability of more affordable EVs, creating more access for lower-income drivers.