Norway: 6.5% Of All Registered Cars Are Now Electric

NOV 1 2018 BY MARK KANE 43

We strongly discourage the opening of a new fuel station in Norway.

Long-standing ultra-high levels of all-electric car sales in Norway finally begin to translate into not negligible shares of the total car fleet in the country.

According to official data, as of the end of September 2018, there were some 178,521 all-electric passenger cars registered in Norway, which is a decent 6.5% of the total fleet (2,728,043). Another 3% comes from plug-in hybrids (over 80,000, we believe).

The biggest player in Norway turns out to be the Nissan LEAF, which since 2011 noted 46,023 registrations (including 31,863 new and some 14,000+ of used imported from other countries). That’s enough for 25.8% of all BEVs and almost 1.7% of all passenger cars.

The private import of used cars from other countries is a significant part of the Norwegian BEV market as we estimate at least 33,000 (23% of total BEVs registered) were first bought abroad and then imported.

Because the numbers in Norway are getting serious (60% of new passenger car sales in September were plug-ins) soon we should see how the oil industry will deal with softening demand for gasoline and diesel (countdown for the news about the first closed refueling station has started).

Source: Opplysningsrådet for Veitrafikken AS (OFV AS), Matthias Schmidt (

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43 Comments on "Norway: 6.5% Of All Registered Cars Are Now Electric"

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Wow!. And it’s the beginning….. in 10 years almost all cars in Norway may be electric.

The average age of a car in Norway is more than 10 years. So I doubt it will be more than 50% electric in 10 years.

Yeah, it is generally assumed that the turnover time for a fleet of vehicles is around 20 years. Some vehicles will be replaced more quickly, but some can live a long time.

It’ll also probably look like an S-curve, slowing down towards the end, when most cars getting replaced by new cars are already electric themselves.

That turnover assumes you are buying another gas vehicle. When used EVs come along they will be much cheaper to fuel and maintain than an equivalent ICE vehicle, which will cause many consumers to upgrade early. This is especially true for people that drive for a living, if you’re paying $10-$15 to go 100 km on petrol and the other guy is only paying $2 to go 100 km on electricity you will need to upgrade to compete.

If you drive for a living, you don’t have a 10 year old car.

it is more like 4$ for 100km for elctric driving, but yeah…

Yes but the theory behind the S curve is that the time it took to get to 10% will be the same to go to 90%

Do Not Read Between The Lines

The important note in the article is that a good proportion of the used vehicles are imported. So, besides the replaced BEVs working their way through the fleet, imported used BEVs could also hasten the transition.

The “used” imported EVs are 0-1 years old, picking up incentives in e.g. Germany and Sweden before being exported to Norway. For all practical purposes, they are as good as new.

I think as the share of ICE cars decrease so will access to fuel stations, which will accelerate the switch to electric.

That is actually minor. It will be the fact that cost of ownership will increase on ICE while EVs will drop. The reason is that EVs continue to become cheaper and cheaper. This is forcing ICE vehicles to quit being built. For example, ICE Sedans are being stopped in AMerica. These are cheaper to make than SUVs. So, the inexpensive vehicles will be EVs, not ICE.

“The average age of a car in Norway is more than 10 years. ”

If the current rate of new cars is 60% EV and that rises linearly to 90% over the next 10 years and the average life of an ICE vehicle in Norway is 15 years and we currently have 10% of the fleet as plugins then we would expect that to exceed 50% ten years hence.

…the actual average age of a vehicle in Norway is about 10.5 years which is about the same as in the US so in 10 years something in the order of 80% of all registered vehicles is more probable. More importantly you might have something like 90% of all miles being driven being electric..

The linear increase argument probably falls apart if gas stations aren’t readily available. For ICE cars, even if demand goes way down that won’t necessarily mean cheap gas because as volume goes down price goes up. It isn’t like EVs where there is a huge electric infrastructure that supports homes and businesses. I tapped into this infrastructure in my garage to charge my Bolt, but gas has no secondary market. Once the percentage of ICE cars gets low enough you just won’t be able to get gas. It is kinda like trying to find non-Tesla DC fast charging outside of CARB states. Not enough EVs to make that business profitable

Do Not Read Between The Lines

With gas stations being convenience stores with pumps, and there being so many (I can think of 5 in my very small city, and 2 in each of 3 neighboring small towns), I think there would be have to be a really massive reduction before it made a difference.

You are making the mistake that such things as vehicle turn-over will remain the same.
I seriously doubt that it will. Norway, and other nations/states will no doubt speed things up by increasing various taxes.
In addition, the price of EVs will continue downwards, which will put lots of pressure on the cost of ownership side.

You have to keep in mind as the cost of EV drops, buyers are more inclined to replace ICE with these lower priced replacement.

What I am saying is the replacement rate may not be a constant.

“countdown for the news about the first closed refueling station has started.”

Number of fueling statiuons in Norway have gone down for the last few decades, in 1990 there were 2928 stations, and in 2015 there were 1580. I doubt this is related to EVs.

Thanks for the info, this also shows how few EV charging stations is actually needed as most people will charge at home.

Agreed I think if you look in the US the number of gas stations have decreased as well. As MPG increase the number of fueling stations necessary to fuel decreases.

Also stations has gone from 1 pump open when someone bothered to work there to multiple 24/7 automated pumps per station with no stores or such. Pump and go in 3 minutes…

Same phenomenon in France where the fueling stations were divided by almost 4 in about 30 years.

If you google gasoline sales Norway you can see the gradual decline in volumes from 2015.

If you Google diesel sales you can see the gradual increase….

Norway is about to decrease their use of petrol/diesel but it has not happened clearly yet.

Those gas stations can be transformed in charging stations with a nice coffeeshop there. Especially the ones on the highways.
If trucks will go electric soon, it will be hard gor gas stations to have enough profits.

Almost all gas stations along the highway have chargers all ready. They need faster chargers installed though, to be more future ready.

How many Tesla Model S cars are there now in Norway?

18 997

This is pretty amazing given that 1) Norway isn’t exactly ideal EV country from a temperature perspective 2) other than Tesla and the Bolt/Opel (which they might not even be available) there really haven’t been many EV options where range isn’t somewhat of a hindrance compared to a ICE. Now that EVs with 60+ kWh batteries are becoming the norm, rather than the exception, the adoption rate is likely to really take off.

Norway has been very EV friendly. You basically had to be crazy to not buy an EV if you were in the market for a car.

Do Not Read Between The Lines

Not ideal for temperature, but actually not too bad. The populous areas are on the coast, and don’t get _really_ cold. (80% live within 10km of the sea). Yes, winter in Oslo is below freezing on average, but Oslo’s average winter lows are all in the 20sF, and the larger west coast cities are mild with winter lows mostly at or above freezing.

The cheap electricity also means that the efficiency impact of the cold weather is not too expensive.

As above. It’s also extremely prosperous, with one of the highest PPP of any country outside the gulf states, a history of high tax that has translated to significant incentives to EV’s. It’s one of the few countries where EV’s are pretty much cheaper to buy new than the equivalent ICE, so no need to calculate whether fuel savings on your usage scenario may or may not pay back the up front cost.

The petrol pumps would start feeling pressure by the year 2020


Norwegens are in the comfortable position that for a few years they can still sell their used ICE cars at reasonable prices abroad – before car owners in the other countries are all rushing for the exit. Hence transformation in Norway will IMO take place faster than some can imagine.

Absolutely right, the first movers can get rid of their ICE cars at an reasonable price, but imagine how the used ICE care market is going to collapse after 2025.

It’s great to see Norway doing this since it’s an active producer of offshore oil and gas. They take climate change real.

People who live in difficult latitudes might be less likely to deny science. I would guess that, traditionally, stupid people were more likely to freeze to death in Scandinavia. So they tend to evolve out of the population. I grew up in Minnesota back when it was even more predominantly a Scandinavia culture. Scandinavians tend to cooperate. I find them to be among the most civilized people on the plant.

Im sure that gas/diesel sales have already dropped. The only issue is that the companies are keeping it quiet.
Look, for the west, our vehicle population is fairly ‘steady’. Yeah, there is a slight growth, but not that much.
That means that the EVs that are bought are generally replacing ICE vehicles. And in fact, that is why norway, California, etc’s EV population is jumping. I would guess that for US and Europe in general, that at least .02%, if not much closer to 1%, are BEVs.

OTOH, look at CHina. China’s vehicle growth is still going gang busters. If you look carefully at China’s numbers, they report SALES of vehicles. What is not really known is the % of running vehicles on the road that are BEV. Chances are that if you look at CHina’s registered numbers, we would see that EVs are less than .01% of all vehicles.

“We strongly discourage the opening of a new fuel station in Norway.”

You did not get that memo?` The fuel stations in Norway is transforming into energy stations with gasoline, diesel, (LPG,) Type2 AC, CCS and Tesla Superchargers. Circle K fueling/energy station chain is now official working to get charging on almost all their station around the country.
there are 178,868 bevs and 83,940 hybrid plugins registered as of 09/30/2018 bringing the pev ratio to 9.6 percent (2.738.m cars)

That’s excellent news. Hopefully those holding out for their favorite brand of EV will not have to wait much longer. The sooner we can leave fossll fuels in the ground the better. Very reliable car. jut make sure the range suites your needs for daily commuting.

Excellent news. The sooner we put the last gas burner to rest the better. Hopefully we will have clean rivers and air soon. Lots of used EVs out there that are bargains now. The used EVs in the States are excellent bargains because the $7,500 tax credit and state and employee credits are passed on to the next consumer.