The average transaction price (ATP) of new electric vehicles sold in the United States went up slightly in March compared to February, according to Kelley Blue Book. Last month, Americans paid on average $54,021 for a new EV, up from February’s $53,707 ATP.

Year-over-year, new EV prices were still 9.7% lower in March, while in February prices were lower by 10.5% year-over-year. The slight increase in the average transaction price was mainly due to Tesla’s decision to bump the selling price of the Model 3, as well as the retirement of the Chevrolet Bolt, which was America's most affordable EV.

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EV sales growth nearly stopped in Q1 and prices went up in March

The sales growth slump that industry experts have been talking about since last year reached an all-time low in the first quarter of this year. In Q1, EV sales in the United States were just 2.6% higher year-over-year but were down compared to Q4 2023.

Despite this, Kelley Blue Book predicts 2024 to be the best-ever year for EVs, with more models, more inventory and more incentives coming.

The first quarter of 2024 saw a noticeable decrease in sales growth compared to the previous two years, KBB said. In Q1, EV sales in the United States went up 2.6% year-over-year but were down 15.2% compared to Q4 2023.

By comparison, the EV sales volume in Q1 2023 was 46.% higher year-over-year and 15.5% quarter-over-quarter. Furthermore, in Q1 2022, EV sales were 81.2% higher year-over-year and 20.4% higher than in Q4 2021.

“Electric vehicle sales in the U.S. declined during Q1 2024 – the first quarter-over-quarter downturn since Q2 2020,” said Stephanie Valdez Streaty, director of Industry Insights at Cox Automotive.

“As anticipated, Tesla’s sales took a hit, influencing the overall market dynamics. However, a few brands saw significant EV sales increases, achieving over 50% year-over-year growth. As noted in January, we are calling 2024, ‘the Year of More’. More new products, more incentives, more inventory, more leasing and more infrastructure will drive EV sales higher this year. Even so, we’ll continue to see ups and downs as the industry moves towards electrification.”

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In Q1 2024, no fewer than nine manufacturers recorded more than 50% year-over-year growth in EV sales. As per Kelley Blue Book, Cadillac saw a 499.2% year-over-year increase in EV sales thanks to the Lyriq, Mercedes-Benz recorded 66.9% more EV sales, and BMW posted a 62.6% increase in the U.S. Ford, Hyundai, Kia, Lexus, Rivian and Vinfast also saw their sales volume increase by over 50% this past quarter compared to the same period last year.

Incentives and discounts continue to play a role in lower EV prices, KBB said. The upcoming wave of new electric models, including more affordable versions, will also play a role in making 2024 the best year ever for EV sales, despite the delivery slump recently recorded by the industry’s biggest player, Tesla.

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