US electric car sales rose slightly (2.1%) in June 2016 compared to June 2015, but were up 8.5% for the year through June. That said, fully electric cars were down 35% in June, and 11% for the year through June (while plug-in hybrids were up 68% and 45.7%, respectively).
There are a variety of factors that may be the cause of the dip in fully electric car sales, including potential errors with simple estimates regarding Tesla sales (which account for a significant portion of US electric car sales). Market factors that could have influenced sales in a negative manner include:
- people awaiting the Chevy Bolt, Tesla Model 3, a longer-range Nissan LEAF and BMW i3, and other long-range electric cars;
- expiration of California’s $2,500 ZEV rebate (and expectation that it will be revived before too long);
- delayed deliveries of Teslas — Model S and Model X (though, given that Tesla sales were higher in June 2016 vs June 2015, I don’t think we can count this as contributing to a negative sales trend for the overall EV market, even though it did depress sales compared to what they could have been);
- month-to-month noise.
As a portion of overall US car sales, electric cars were at 0.7% in June.
In terms of how the cars ranked, you can see that well enough via the chart at the top, but the general highlights from the first half of 2016 compared to the first half of 2015 are that:
- the Nissan LEAF fell from #2 in 2015 to #4 in 2016
- the Chevy Volt rose from #3 in 2015 to #2 in 2016
- the Ford Fusion Energi rose from #5 in 2015 to #3 in 2016
- the BMW i3 fell from #4 in 2015 to #7 in 2016
- the Tesla Model S was #1 both years
- the Tesla Model X has already climbed to #5 in 2015
I also think it’s interesting that just 5 cars accounted for ⅔ of the US electric car market in June, and for the year through June.
Any other thoughts on the numbers?