U.S. Plug-In Electric Car Sales Split Between BEVs and PHEVs/EREVs

JUN 20 2015 BY MARK KANE 24

U.S. Plug-In Car Sales - May 2015

U.S. Plug-In Car Sales – May 2015

Tesla Motors store

Tesla Model S

As you’ve probably already read, US plug-in car sales reached about 11,540 last month, which is 6.7% less than the 12,362 sold in May of 2014.

Market share fell down from 0.77% to 0.71%.

To not be too pessimistic, both sales numbers and market share were in May the best so far this year; and sales are specifically lower only because both the current generation of Toyota Prius PHV and Chevrolet Volt are out of production while waiting on 2.0 versions.

Continuing our in-depth study of the plug-in electric car market, we compiled data published by Electric Drive Transportation Association.

What you see below are basically two graphs – one for all-electric cars (BEV) and a second one for all the rest (PHEV and EREV) plus guiding lines for the previous year.

As it turns out, pure electric car sales are developing well. Growth was almost uninterrupted, besides in 2012, when the Nissan LEAF was subjected to criticism because of early battery capacity fade, especially in places like Phoenix.

However, below we see a significant drop in plug-in hybrids/extended range cars. We believe that the introduction of the new 2016 Chevrolet Volt will help resume the growth later this year.

U.S. Plug-In Car Sales - May 2015

U.S. Plug-In Car Sales – May 2015

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24 Comments on "U.S. Plug-In Electric Car Sales Split Between BEVs and PHEVs/EREVs"

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The Petro-auto cartel does a real good job killing the exponential growth of EVs.
Hybrids were always designed and sold to make us forget about the first wave of real BEVs of the late ’90s.

Their main goal is to delay as much as they can the death of the archaic and inefficient Internal Explosions Engine.


And to annoy Lustuccc…


Brian S

It looks clear that despite the prognostications that PHEVs were the only way to go “until batteries get ‘good enough’ ” BEVs are pulling ahead. They have a big advantage in that Tesla is 100% committed whereas the Toyotas and Fords not so much.

Looking forward, the cost of batteries is dropping relentlessly and Tesla keeps pushing the other companies. I don’t see the big future cost savings for two drivetrain vehicles.

In Europe PHEVs are proliferating, but they are short-range are regulatory driven. Even there it is neck and neck between the two.


Part of that has to do with incentives in the US and rest of the world.

The incentives are in general heavily favoring the BEVs over PHEV/EREVs… In regions where the incentives are similar or close, the sales are more even. In regions where incentives are favoring the BEVs, the sales are heavily tilted toward BEVs. When there is very little incentives, then the sales are both down but tilts slightly towards the PHEV/EREVs…


The problem is the largest subsidy is for oil via US military involved in the Middle East. Let’s try this: have oil and gas companies pay to protect their own product in the Middle East. They would have to pay for stabilization of these countries and pay for transport protection of oil travel via sea. Watch the price of oil go through the roof. This then would be the TRUE price of oil, without the American taxpayer footing the bill.


Blah, Blah, Blah…

Nobody is arguing against the purpose of the incentives.

It is just a simple correlation that sales of the BEV correlates to the amount of incentives. The ratio of the BEV/PHEV is affected by the incentives ratio applied to BEV/PHEV.


The problem is that they blur that cost in the global security cost, but indeed even the price of a single USS carrier would likely have an impact on the gallon. On the other hand you obviously would lose the building of that carrier and everything that comes with it which equate to another us lobby, so the snake kind of eat its tail. It is a very complicate intertwine actually, not ease to solve. Importing less oil from rogue countries is affecting weapons sales the most, so counter intuitively there is a positive system feed-back that would rather stop importing oil from Norway than from Iraq for instance. I don’t have a ready solution for this but making ev more appealing than ice cars looks like having at least some change potential. There is perhaps also potential in giving some of the multiactivity weapons producers more contracts for those other activities so that their interest in weapons would be less. That could be the actual colonization of Mars or Venus which would imply huge budgets. Of course to decide on such programs it takes a true will and, many times, from the same people that are at power now.


Kennedy tried that with the moon, but companies took the moon AND the Viet-nam. .. And The Banks took him out.


… Executive order 11110…



Jeff Songster

Absolutely right. Cut off the foreign aid and stupid wars for oil and the prices will get real quickly. Gonna happen eventually… might as well pull the band aid of foreign wars off quickly. Shut down the Military industrial complex and end the war profiteering.

Clif J

You need another layer of foil on your hat. I was able to use my oil-funded mind scanner to read yours, so clearly your protective cover has gotten wrinkly.

Clif J

that was intended for LuStucc, BTW


The raddest of the raddest got tin foil rockets…


Maybe if you had some arguments to support your insults you could gain some credibility..

Omar Sultan

First, always appreciate this kind of analysis and number crunching from the site – kudos.

Regarding the PHEV/EREV curve, I agree we are seeing the overhang of the next-gen Volt I would not be surprised if the Y/Y gap closed once the new Volt is out, assuming GM does not bungle the launch.


From provided data, one can assume that current crop of plugins can not get through 1% barrier (sadly).

Let’s see if Q4 offerings change that.


2012 Leaf sales were down before the capacity problems surfaced. The low numbers were mainly because of increased price which was a result of tsunami induced yen appreciation.


I want my Tesla Gen III. My leaf is perfect except for range. 2017-18 will see sales of BEVs top 100,000 with next gen batterys and 200 mile range.


How are you counting i3 ? Should be either PHEV or split. We know more REx gets sold compared to BEV.

Jay Cole

I’m not sure how exactly they are counting them…it’s the EDTA. We estimate the splits each month on our summary based on trailing production data, but it is still far from perfect on a month-to-month basis.


I am really a bit confused with what’s going on at the moment, I think in the end there will be a lot more plugins but what they’ll be and who’s a head I just don’t know anymore. Nissan, tesla, Mitsubishi, Toyota, GM, BMW, VW, merc, byd, etc. they all have early beginigs of a strategy but I am lost to which will win out in the end. I geuss we just have to pause and wait.


It is too bad that we can’t find a Corolla with an i3 system in it because that would contribute at lot to increase the percentage of plug-in cars. Toyota action is really missing here.

Jeff Songster

Between abandoning the Tesla deal, beating up on BEVs, shipping the H2 white elephant Mirai, and such… Toyota is really asleep at the wheel these days. Love my 2008 Prius… but cannot for the life of me figure out why the company has gone so far off the green rails after their early lead. They didn’t even crush all their original RAV4evs… they had good mojo going and then poof… they smoked something or failed to… and look how silly they look now. 10 miles ev range plug ins… how about at least matching the VOLT before you simply spice up the looks of the next PIPrius.