Jan 20

The world’s top half-dozen plug-in selling nations

 

It’s been said of the still-new breed of “plug-in vehicles” that the proverbial horses have broken past the gate, there’s no putting them back, and more precisely, during 2013 these “horses” crested past the one-third million global unit mark.

Counting reported registrations and sales of plug-in hybrids and all-electric vehicles since a few came to market as far back as 2003 – and the real game got started in 2010 – a cumulative total of about 380,000 had been delivered as of December.

Chevy-Volt-S-bend
 

Below, we’ve compiled a list of the half-dozen countries buying the most of these vehicles.

Together, these countries account for over 353,000 vehicles out of the total – 93 percent of the plug-in electrified vehicle (PEV) stock.

Their counts in cases includes some commercial and low-speed vehicles because some countries lump in data for types of plug-ins other than regular road-going varieties and there is no way to distinguish between these. In other cases, for similar reasons, we have only battery electric cars, and no plug-in hybrids.

As the world approaches 400,000 plug-in vehicles in use, also true is there has been pushback against them, and earlier optimistic projections have been tempered. What is more, the cumulative total is not really a lot compared to tens of millions of conventional cars and trucks sold over the same period.

But it is what it is, and the plug-in market is expanding; many more vehicles are coming, even if it’s not as fast as some proponents would like.

Core motivations behind the push for these advanced gas-electric vehicles include national and regional government regulations. Those reasons plus the underlying environmental and energy concerns that gave rise to mandates – and generally shared sentiment held by consumers – is continuing to spur demand.

Countries which showed the highest rate of growth from 2012 to 2013 were the Netherlands (338 percent), Norway (129 percent), Germany (105 percent) and the U.S. (81 percent).

Despite Germany’s growth however, it yet lags behind in a distant seventh place with only 11,702 plug-in vehicles purchased since 2009. This amounts to 0.14 plug-in vehicles per 1000 people in the premier-automotive manufacturing country of over 80 million people, and Germany’s market share for plug-ins (among the entire passenger vehicle market) is 0.20 percent.

Those countries with the highest market share in 2013 were Norway (5.6 percent), the Netherlands (5.37 percent), France (0.65 percent), Sweden (0.57 percent) and the U.S. (0.62 percent).

As for the actual car brands, names you are likely familiar with are leading the way, but smaller fish also round out the counts. Our HybridCars.com Dashboard shows all sellers in the U.S.

In Europe notable brands include Renault-Nissan, Mitsubishi (and re-badged variants), General Motors’ brands have a growing presence, and Tesla Motors is on the rise also.

But without further deliberation, following are the top six by volume:

1. United States

 

ELR_Model_S
 

Since 2010, a total of 168,152 battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) have been sold.

This does not include around 1,800 sales of the Tesla Roadster, 1,600 Fisker Karmas and 500 Mini Es, but if you wish, add them in and you have just over 172,000 plug-in vehicles since 2008.

By either count, the U.S. – a manufacturer and innovator in the plug-in vehicle space – is the highest adopter by a wide margin when looking at volume, but on a percentage basis it is only just decent in the scheme of things.

Last year saw an increase in sales to 96,050 units compared to 53,172 units in 2012. However, given the U.S. population is estimated at more than 320 million, the penetration rate per 1000 people is 0.53, and market share out of 15.53 million passenger vehicles sold in 2013 was 0.62 percent.

The U.S. is projected to continue as a driver to the global plug-in car market due in part to its federal Corporate Average Fuel Economy mandates. These will tighten fleet emissions and mpg requirements from 2017 to 2025 – although the rules are actually written so that automakers can meet standards with only 1-3 percent plug-in cars if they choose to maximize efficiency from conventional gas and diesel technologies.

It’s been said that a more robust push to the market is coming from Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) mandates imposed by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), and other states that have signed onto these rules.

The U.S. auto industry this year is reportedly preparing a push of its own – against the strict rules that mandate by 2025 one out of seven cars sold must be a ZEV, but CARB’s rules will continue as a prod – or, depending on perspective, a threatened hoop automakers must jump through.

Meanwhile, consumers are becoming aware of plug-in cars, and while unconvinced consumers and some in the media in turn push back also, there is room for much more growth.

2. Japan

 

nissan-leaf-charging1
 

December sales stats for Japan won’t be available until the end of this month, but the count from 2009 through November 2013 of over 68,000 battery electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles puts it firmly in second place.

Japan evenly matches the U.S. with 0.53 units per 1000 people, but its population is of course smaller, with over 127.1 million people.

Market share is 0.85 percent of all passenger vehicles sold in Japan – in qualified terms.

For the 0.85 percent estimate, sales counted are for 2,872,111 new cars. However, in Japan they have tiny kei cars, and adding these in brings the registered fleet to 5,375,513, lowering the share to 0.45. We are going with the higher number to stay more apples-to apples with other nations.

Japan is a major manufacturing base for cars like the Nissan Leaf, home also to Honda and Toyota which are also at work on plug-in and other advanced electrified technologies.

The perceived need for these products and industry drivers are similar in kind in Japan.

3. China

 

byd_qin_phev
 

The world’s largest auto market is also a mix of first-world and emerging capabilities, and since 2011 its massive population now totaling 1.385 billion absorbed 38,592 electrified plug-in vehicles including cars, buses and commercial vehicles.

We hear a lot of talk about China’s grand plans, and relatively generous subsidies for EV manufacturing and purchases, but it is actually under-performing with 0.08 percent of the total market consisting of plug-in vehicles.

The penetration rate, is just 0.03 PEVs per 1,000 people.

This week BYD announced the domestic launch of its Qin plug-in hybrid, and this may be part of the first Chinese imports to the U.S. as part of a four-car U.S. lineup by end of 2015.

BYD says it’s planning also distribution to other key global markets.

Within China’s market, a new round of subsidies in September by the central government led to a bullish 60,000-80,000 unit sales projection for this year by Ye Shengji, deputy secretary-general of the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

What ever it does in the near term, China’s sheer size, and desire and determination to grow will certainly see it ascend as time goes on, and there’s no telling how high it will ultiimately climb.

4. Netherlands

 

Tesla Motors Opens Assembly Plant in Tilburg, Netherlands
 

Since 2009, the Netherlands has registered 28,673 PHEVs and BEVs which is a large number considering its population is around 16,833,606, about four-million people less than reside just in Beijing.

The Netherlands’ market penetration rate for plug-in vehicles is around 1.71 vehicles per 1,000 people, and the market share is a not-insubstantial 5.37 percent of all passenger vehicles.

This market share, makes the Netherlands the second-highest ranking country in the world in terms of plug-in vehicle adoption on a percentage of the whole market basis.

What’s more, the majority of its cumulative plug-in volume happened all of a sudden, as 22,415 sales out of the total 28,673 were documented last year – a growth rate of 338 percent – by far the highest of any country in the world.

By contrast, 5,117 vehicles were bought in 2012, 746 in 2011, and 395 in 2010.

Progressive policies in the country and eager, forward-thinking consumers are making this one of the world’s case examples demonstrating viability for plug-in cars today.

This nation was chosen by Tesla Motors as an assembly plant location and distribution base as its is centrally located within Europe, and no doubt highly EV friendly itself.

5. France

 

Go-Low-Citroen-C-Zero-1212
 

France’s total might be lower or higher depending on how one parses the data, but the stats we could get are 28,560 battery electric vehicles, including 17,256 cars and 11,304 utility vans, and excluding plug-in hybrids.

The country’s population is over 65,860,000 and sales of plug-in electrified vehicles per 1,000 people is around 0.44.

The market share is close to the U.S. at 0.65 percent but because this includes commercial vehicles, we named the U.S. as higher with 0.62 percent BEV and PHEV passenger cars. France’s market share is 0.49 if only all-electric cars are considered.

6. Norway

 

Nissan_Leaf_Norway-668
 

Last but not least is Norway which gets a boost given its sales of 20,486 include sales back to 2003, but most of the growth has happened only recently.

Also, the total is only for all-electric cars, excluding PHEVs which the country is also buying in much lesser numbers. Further, about 1,500 sales are for low-speed city cars in the early years, but this is an amazing story either way.

Norway’s population is 3.2 million people less than that of New York City at just around 5,042,671 people but the rate of EVs per 1,000 people is 4.04 – 2.4 times more than the Netherlands which includes PHEVs, and Norway’s market share for EVs in 2013 was 5.6 percent.

We wrote about the phenomenal growth in this country in November, and the following month saw a new record for plug-ins, and calendar year sales in 2013 were 10,769 out of the total 20,486 or 129.1 percent growth.

If the U.S. had the same percentage of market share as Norway, given its vastly larger population, its plug-in sales would have been 872,534 units, and we’d all be celebrating Obama’s ambitious 2015 goal of 1 million plug-in cars some time this year.
 

Thanks to alternative-energy advocate and HybridCars.com reader Mario R. Duran who helped with research. Duran gathers U.S. data from HybridCars.com’s Dashboard and other sources, and globally from published reports.

This entry was posted on Monday, January 20th, 2014 at 5:55 am and is filed under General. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

COMMENTS: 48


  1. 1
    xiaowei1

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (6:09 am)

    it is quite sad to see Australia making little head room for the Electric car market. granted we have NO incentives and sales of electric cars are MUCH more expensive than in the US. I hope one day we will be in the top 6, though I also fear it is still quite far away.

    what I do want to say is despite the low sales around the globe, acceptance is growing. If the market keeps this kind of growth, in just a few years ICE sales will take a substantial hit, and petrol will continue to be a commodity of the past.

    thanks for the write up Jeff!


  2. 2
    James McQuaid

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (6:54 am)


    Countries which showed the highest rate of growth from 2012 to 2013 were the Netherlands (338 percent), Norway (129 percent), Germany (105 percent) and the U.S. (81 percent).

    Despite Germany’s growth however, it yet lags behind in a distant seventh place with only 11,702 plug-in vehicles purchased since 2009. This amounts to 0.14 plug-in vehicles per 1000 people in the premier-automotive manufacturing country of over 80 million people, and Germany’s market share for plug-ins (among the entire passenger vehicle market) is 0.20 percent.

    Those countries with the highest market share in 2013 were Norway (5.6 percent), the Netherlands (5.37 percent), France (0.65 percent), Sweden (0.57 percent) and the U.S. (0.62 percent).

    Unlike Americans, who have a voracious appetite for foreign brand vehicles, the Germans prefer German auto companies. Consequently, we can expect German PHEV market share to rise as BMW and Volkswagen bring the i3 and eGolf to market.


  3. 3
    Mark Z

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (8:12 am)

    Jeff, loved the report. Very informative especially with the link to “Top 10 Green Cars We’re Looking Forward to in 2014″. Your positive attitude is so refreshing in a world of negative reporting:

    http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2014/01/19/tesla-motors-dirty-little-secret-is-a-major-proble.aspx

    So much “news” that other “reporters” write has an agenda behind it, making it difficult to sort fact from fiction. This is where your reports shine, as truth trumps agenda and makes reading your information a valuable education of the hybrid and alternative power transportation industry.

    With 2014 being the “year of the wait” for production of the new Top 10, we can expect the time to pass slower than usual. Reminds me of being a child again and the long wait for Christmas! To counter the wait, the Model S drivers will have new places to visit as each SuperCharger opens. That should bring joy for those with free time to travel and relish the new found freedom of free travel across the United States, Europe and China!

    http://www.businessspectator.com.au/news/2014/1/15/china/tesla-plans-develop-charging-network-china


  4. 4
    ClarksonCote

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (9:21 am)

    Any insight into global Volt sales?


  5. 5
    Raymondjram

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (9:32 am)

    GM and Nissan have lead the way to start assembly plants at other nations where they will sell well and not have their own brands of EVs being manufactured. The Australian government should begin talks and create deals with GM to start a new assembly plant for the Volt (as the Holden Volt) and maybe add the Spark EV (with a new name) to assemble and sell these EVs in Australia for a lesser price than imported them.

    Many other nations already have a GM assembly plant established, so all GM has to do is add EVs to that assembly line. As an example, the Spark and the Cruze are assembled worldwide. Adding the EV parts for the Spark, and adding Volt parts for the Cruze line will do it.

    I hope Mary Barra, the new GM CEO, reads this and thinks how to make GM better with my suggestions.

    Raymond


  6. 6
    Avery

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (9:34 am)

    (click to show comment)


  7. 7
    'georgeBower

     

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (10:32 am)

    Raymondjram:
    The Australian government should begin talks and create deals with GM to start a new assembly plant for the Volt (as the Holden Volt) and maybe add the Spark EV (with a new name) to assemble and sell these EVs in Australia for a lesser price than imported them.

    I hope Mary Barra, the new GM CEO, reads this and thinks how to make GM better with my suggestions.

    Raymond

    GM is closing their Holden opps:
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-12-11/gm-holden-to-stop-auto-manufacturing-in-australia-in-2017.html

    I also hope Mary Barra reads our suggestions and comments here at GM-Volt….but realistically I tend to doubt it. If she did, she would see how many disappointed Volt owners there were to Jeff’s questions for GM reps at the Detroit auto show. GM’s calling the Volt a NICHE vehicle with no plans to expand the Voltec power train to other models.

    GM is rapidly falling behind the curve. Just yesterday Alan Mulally Ford CEO said about Ford’s new aluminum truck: “If you want to continue to lead you have to take some risk. Ford cannot afford to merely follow”.

    Do we see GM expanding Voltec??–No
    Do we see any plans for GM to aluminize THEIR pick up truck fleet?….No

    GM is definitely a follower at this point. As one poster here says: “Lead, Follow, or get out of the way”

    Looks like GM should just get out of the way.


  8. 8
    Dave G

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (11:04 am)

    Avery: I think PHEV will never be mainstream (>10% market share) , not in the next 50 years !

    I agree. EREVs will be mainstream. PHEVs will not.

    Recent data from the Department of Energy shows that Volt owners actually drive more electric miles than Leaf owners.
    http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1088628_chevy-volt-owners-drive-more-electric-miles-than-nissan-leaf-drivers-why

    Real world data from http://www.voltstats.net shows the median of all Volts drive 80% of their miles on electricity.

    GM’s former CEO has said the Gen2 Volt will cost $10,000 less to build and have over 50 miles all-electric range. With over 50 miles AER, real world data from voltstats.net shows the Gen2 Volt yielding closer to 90% EV mode.

    Plotting these points below, it appears the optimum all-electric range for a gas/electric plug-in lies on the knee of this curve (somewhere between 40-60 miles). The Volt is currently the only car anywhere near this optimum range.

    PHEVs currently max out around 20 miles. Looking at the curve below, with 20 miles of electric range, most drivers will still drive 50% of their miles on gasoline. With 10 miles AER, it’s closer to 75% on gasoline.

    As battery prices fall, higher range gas/electric plug-ins will dominate.

    curve_zps0c3e8036.jpg


  9. 9
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (11:54 am)

    xiaowei1: what I do want to say is despite the low sales around the globe, acceptance is growing. If the market keeps this kind of growth, in just a few years ICE sales will take a substantial hit, and petrol will continue to be a commodity of the past.

    #1

    “From your lips to God’s ear” +1


  10. 10
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (11:59 am)

    What a comprehensive article. Thanks Jeff for your hard work. Well done!


  11. 11
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (12:02 pm)

    James McQuaid: Unlike Americans, who have a voracious appetite for foreign brand vehicles, the Germans prefer German auto companies.

    #2

    Sad but true, and the Japanese as well. +1

    Much as I hate to admit it, they are clearly smarter than we are in this arena.


  12. 12
    DonC

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (12:19 pm)

    Thanks for the great article Jeff.

    At this point it seems like it’s all about incentives. EV sales in Japan were far more robust before the very generous subsidies went away. Then they went south. Norway has robust sales because it taxes gas cars at super high rates. That’s the bad news. The good news is that you can to some extent substitute time for money, so as time goes on batteries get cheaper and, as batteries get cheaper, cars relying on batteries will get cheaper.

    Speaking of prices, I like the new lease rates on the ELR. ;-)


  13. 13
    Raymondjram

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (12:24 pm)

    `Noel Park: #2

    Sad but true, and the Japanese as well.+1

    Much as I hate to admit it, they are clearly smarter than we are in this arena.

    It took years of bad-mouthing domestic vehicles and falsely praising imports to do that. I know many Americans that will never buy an American car! I strongly doubt there are have the few brain cells needed to realize that they were wrong. Maybe it was their mother’s fault for not giving them enough good cells at birth! Even Bill Gates is one of them. He drives a Lexus!

    Raymond


  14. 14
    Dave G

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (1:00 pm)

    Raymondjram: I know many Americans that will never buy an American car!

    Actually, that was me. If it weren’t for the Volt, I would never have bought another American car. Been burned too many times.

    By the way, according to the Volt sticker, most of the parts are foreign:
    2013ChevyVoltSticker3_zpsa15e436e.jpg


  15. 15
    Charlie H

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (1:17 pm)

    (click to show comment)


  16. 16
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (2:52 pm)

    Raymondjram: It took years of bad-mouthing domestic vehicles and falsely praising imports to do that.

    #13

    I’m with you. +1


  17. 17
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (2:59 pm)

    Charlie H: Domestic vehicles got bad-mouthed when people realized that cars could be better and they realized this because they noticed that some were better.

    #15

    I have been driving Chevrolets exclusively for the last 19 years and have experienced NONE of the problems you have described. It’s all urban legend IMHO.

    We are destroying our economy by running a huge and unending negative balance of payments. It is not sustainable. Every Toyota that gets sold is another nail in our coffin. I am trying to do my bit to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem.


  18. 18
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (3:02 pm)

    I just heard a report on the local news station about bickering which has broken out in Silicon Valley because employees have too many electric cars for the number of charging stations employers have provided. This includes, but is not limited to, drivers unplugging other people’s cars to plug in their own. Egads! Sound familiar? Except that now it’s national news, LOL. Where will it all end?


  19. 19
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (3:06 pm)

    Dave G: By the way, according to the Volt sticker, most of the parts are foreign:

    #14

    Interesting. I wonder where the other 20% of the parts come from. Wait a second, maybe I don’t want to know, LOL.

    My 2011 Volt was 40% U.S. and Canadian parts and the engine came from Austria. Now that the engine is made here, I wonder if they are outsourcing some more of the other miscellaneous stuff? The engine has to be more than 5% of the total, right?


  20. 20
    Larry4pyro

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (3:22 pm)

    Have you noticed the vast majority of EV drivers absolutely love their cars. The reason, of course is they are economical, but also are a lot more fun to drive. Each year, as more and more EVs are sold, the number of EV proponents will grow, and these folks who are our friends and neighbors will tell other people how much they love their EVs. Eventually, a tipping point will be reached where the average car buyer becomes aware of the benefits of EVs and this overcomes their fear of the unknown, and EV sales will soar. I believe we are near that point. I also believe extended range EVs like the Volt can satisfy the driving needs of most drivers.

    To that end, GM and other manufactures should quit making dedicated EVs and instead move electric propulsion into their mainstream vehicles. When this happens I think the take rate of EVs will skyrocket.


  21. 21
    Bonaire

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (4:19 pm)

    Avery:
    I think PHEV will never be mainstream (>10% market share) , not in the next 50 years !

    I know you got huge negatives on this but I think it matters on which country is looked at, the price of fuels, and a whole lot more. Norway and Holland were huge for both evs and pihvs. But it is heavily incentivized. Without incentives, I see trending toward 10-15% sales of new cars worldwide until someone shouts “oil runs out in 20 years”. Hope to see trucks go electric in 10 years so there are choices there. If just cars are electrified and not big ‘UVs and trucks, it doesn’t really matter.


  22. 22
    Bonaire

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (4:21 pm)

    `Noel Park:
    I just heard a report on the local news station about bickering which has broken out in Silicon Valley because employees have too many electric cars for the number of charging stations employers have provided.This includes, but is not limited to, drivers unplugging other people’s cars to plug in their own.Egads!Sound familiar?Except that now it’s national news, LOL.Where will it all end?

    +1 on this. Thousands of EVs will be sold in 2014 and far fewer public j1772 stations. Fun to watch…from my state of PA.


  23. 23
    Bonaire

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (4:24 pm)

    Regarding foreign or domestic. If someone could find out the parts content of Ford offerings, I would bet they have about as much USA content as a Tesla.


  24. 24
    bobc

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (4:46 pm)

    Charlie H,

    Sorry to burst your bubble Charlie H but the Japanese are not building better cars. What you are observing is the miracle of manufacturing statistics at work in a free market. By the time any Japanese car is sold or manufactured here the manufacturing process is about 3 years old. Take your beloved Pirius for example, launched in Japan 1997 and worldwide in 2000. By the time the Pirius got to US shores all manufacturing processes had been optimized and cost had been wrung out. Detroit could not figure out if Toyota was making a profit on a hybrid selling for $19,000 but I guarantee you they were. American auto manufacturers have no such advantage their products are released to the public with infant manufacturing processes with low yields to start and the cost reductions come after the next 2 years. Because their are more American cars statistically in the US and more exposure to cars off early production lines the statistical quality of American cars are perceived to be lower. Imports are still not the majority in this country. This is changing however because the statistical quality of the Volt was high because it was made with mature processes and many of the more defect prone processes have been eliminated by propulsion system design. It is likely that you will find the same or higher quality in the Teslas and the Spark EV. Japan has had a De facto closed market with all of its products, including but not limited to produce rice automobiles and electronic appliances.


  25. 25
    bobc

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (4:53 pm)

    Larry4pyro,

    Eventually this may happen, the cost of too steep an implementation ramp would be too high, market acceptance also plays a part. The cost would probably be twice the bail out costs of GM for each auto manufacturer and we would be paying 50% to 100% more for cars with way shorter range.


  26. 26
    Kent

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (4:59 pm)

    `Noel Park:
    I just heard a report on the local news station about bickering which has broken out in Silicon Valley because employees have too many electric cars for the number of charging stations employers have provided.This includes, but is not limited to, drivers unplugging other people’s cars to plug in their own.Egads!Sound familiar?Except that now it’s national news, LOL.Where will it all end?

    Here’s the article….

    http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_24947237/charge-rage-too-many-electric-cars-not-enough-workplace-chargers


  27. 27
    rdunniii

     

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (5:07 pm)

    `Noel Park: #15

    I have been driving Chevrolets exclusively for the last 19 years and have experienced NONE of the problems you have described.It’s all urban legend IMHO.

    Well I was exclusively a Chevrolet and Pontiac owner until 1989 and I or a family member who was exclusively an Oldsmobile owner experienced every one of those problems.


  28. 28
    kdawg

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (5:12 pm)

    Bonaire: Regarding foreign or domestic. If someone could find out the parts content of Ford offerings, I would bet they have about as much USA content as a Tesla.

    I didn’t see Tesla listed, but here are some %’s for you from the AALA. {EDIT} I found Tesla in the 2013 chart listed at 55%.

    Note the 2013 Leaf was 15% US/Canadian content, but it’s now at 35%.
    The vehicle with the most US content is Chevy Express/GMC Savana at 80%.

    AALA-Ford_zps148a3c61.jpg
    AALA-GM_zps33915bc7.jpg
    AALA-GM2_zps08f21683.jpg
    AALA-Nissan_zps02603b32.jpg
    AALA-Toyota_zps8f81b4cb.jpg

    Here you can get more information (PDF’s)
    http://www.nhtsa.gov/Laws+&+Regulations/Part+583+American+Automobile+Labeling+Act+(AALA)+Reports


  29. 29
    kdawg

     

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (5:21 pm)

    Posted this late yesterday, but if anyone wants a free “No Gas” t-shirt from Via Motors, see the picture below I snapped at the Detroit Auto Show on Saturday. (No Tesla Model X at the show, but I did get to sit in all the seats in a Model S. My head does hit the roof when in the back seat. I also go to see the BMW i3 in person. Yes it’s tiny when you first look at it)

    IMG_20140118_163240_383_zpse00fbb01.jpg


  30. 30
    `Noel Park

     

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (5:23 pm)

    Kent: Here’s the article…

    #26

    Thanks. +1

    No good deed goes unpunished, LOL.


  31. 31
    kdawg

     

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (5:30 pm)

    `Noel Park,

    Kent,

    I feel sorry for the idiot who ICE’s one of those spots. (not really)


  32. 32
    'georgeBower

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (6:15 pm)

    Charlie H,

    I see Toyota as far behind as GM. I own a Prius and a Volt and I really like the Prius also. It is no longer about Toyota vs GM. It is about the fact that Ford has trumped them both.

    The near 30 MPG all aluminum Ford pick up truck, 2.7 liter turbo motor Ford is the big thing. While Toyota and GM weren’t looking FORD put aluminum bodies into production….and as we know “pickem” up trucks aren’t low production. The F150 makes the Prius look low production. It makes the Tesla S look like low production. Ford basically just gave Tesla a bigger backup vote of confidence in the next place to go (aluminum).

    Now add in the fact that Ford has out HSD’d toyota. They have the same tranny and use it effectively in many of their plain hybrids AND ENERGI plug in.

    If you add in all fords plug ins it comes to about 1200 a month which makes Ford a stronger competitor than Toyota for sure.


  33. 33
    Raymondjram

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (6:19 pm)

    Dave G,

    Remember that the origin of a vehicle is the manufacturer, not the contents or the location. If the Volt was assembled in another nation, it is still an American car.

    Raymond


  34. 34
    Raymondjram

    +5

     

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (6:26 pm)

    `Noel Park:
    I just heard a report on the local news station about bickering which has broken out in Silicon Valley because employees have too many electric cars for the number of charging stations employers have provided.This includes, but is not limited to, drivers unplugging other people’s cars to plug in their own.Egads!Sound familiar?Except that now it’s national news, LOL.Where will it all end?

    It will end when EV owners charge more at their homes and manage their travels ever day. I remember when my Dad had to plan where to travel every day because the closest gas station was about a half hour away by car, so each tankful had to last as much as possible. EVs can get power at any outlet, not just charge stations.

    Raymond


  35. 35
    Raymondjram

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (6:50 pm)

    ‘georgeBower:
    Charlie H,

    Now add in the fact that Ford has out HSD’d toyota. They have the same tranny and use it effectively in many of their plain hybrids ANDENERGI plug in.

    Ford uses a similar transmission, not the same. When Ford was developing the Escape Hybrid, they discovered that their own transmission (made by Aisin) had the same functions as the Toyota HSD. So to avoid legal and patent issues, they were paying Toyota a license fee for every Escape Hybrid produced. This fact generated the false idea that Ford copied Toyota, or used the same hybrid system:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hybrid_Synergy_Drive

    Their present transmission (e-CVT) HF35 is more advanced and made in Detroit, allowing more of a pure EV drive than the Prius, and it is so different that they are not paying Toyota any more fees: http://wardsauto.com/vehicles-amp-technology/ford-says-homegrown-cvt-key-speed-fuel-economy-new-hybrids

    This is why I posted before that the 2014 Fusion Energi is the Volt’s closest competition, since it can drive in pure EV only. I did a test drive and read the owner manual, so I am 100% sure. If the Energi had a 40-mile EV range, it will be better than the Volt (five seats).

    Raymond


  36. 36
    `Noel Park

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (8:29 pm)

    Raymondjram: It will end when EV owners charge more at their homes and manage their travels ever day.

    #34

    True, but I think that there will be a lot more people wanting to buy EVs if they can charge at work and make a longer commute.

    Part of the genius of the Volt is that you don’t have to stress so much about this stuff. It’s nice to make the whole trip on electricity, but it’s not the end of the world if you can’t.


  37. 37
    Raymondjram

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (8:36 pm)

    Charlie H:

    This will change when Detroit builds a car that really is just as good and all the people Detroit abused have died.

    I am not one of those abused, since all my GM vehicles have given superb service for up to 26 years. Are you one of those abused? Then we will probably see your obituary soon!

    Raymond


  38. 38
    'georgeBower

     

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (8:38 pm)

    Raymondjram:
    This is why I posted before that the 2014 Fusion Energi is the Volt’s closest competition,

    Raymond

    The horribly ironic thing is that GM is too stupid to realize that they have a superior product.


  39. 39
    Jackson

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (9:53 pm)

    `Noel Park:
    I just heard a report on the local news station about bickering which has broken out in Silicon Valley because employees have too many electric cars for the number of charging stations employers have provided.This includes, but is not limited to, drivers unplugging other people’s cars to plug in their own.Egads!Sound familiar?Except that now it’s national news, LOL.Where will it all end?

    I seem to recall predicting something like this here a few years ago … actually at a stronger level than ‘bickering.’ Soon, I think we will see it come to blows …

    Good thing we can motor away on gas, if necessary. ;-)


  40. 40
    Jeff Cobb

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (10:47 pm)

    Thanks everyone who said something positive today about this.

    Got to video shoot the ELR today. Have more to do tomorrow.

    The paddle shifters work like brakes at your fingertips. They send more kilowatts back to the pack than L – seems like nearly twice. Will pull the car to a near stop. With passengers, its slows just a bit less effectively.

    It progressively increase regens, and will stop the car even going down hill at 50 mph pr more. Will eventually bring it to 2-3 mph crawl — quicker on flats. Won’t bring it to zero.

    There, that’s a spoiler for what I’ll say in the review when I write it …
    .
    (It handles sharper than the Volt too, even with extra curb weight, but I wonder how the Volt would do with the same (non-LRR) 245-series tires, and maybe a suspension tweak, if there was one readily available?


  41. 41
    Charlie H

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (11:15 pm)

    (click to show comment)


  42. 42
    Charlie H

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    Charlie H
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    Jan 20th, 2014 (11:39 pm)

    (click to show comment)


  43. 43
    Charlie H

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    Jan 20th, 2014 (11:46 pm)

    (click to show comment)


  44. 44
    Charlie H

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    Charlie H
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    Jan 20th, 2014 (11:52 pm)

    (click to show comment)


  45. 45
    Charlie H

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    Jan 21st, 2014 (8:37 am)

    (click to show comment)


  46. 46
    Jackson

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    Jan 21st, 2014 (11:36 am)

    Charlie H,

    The mere presence of your screen name is sufficient to represent the far edge of the bell-curve.

    :-P


  47. 47
    john1701a

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    Jan 21st, 2014 (10:33 pm)

    Watching history repeat is fascinating. Targets are becoming expectations. Purity is blinding reason. The same problems are resurfacing. It’s hard to believe. Why?


  48. 48
    Charlie H

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    Jan 21st, 2014 (11:21 pm)

    Jackson,

    My experience isn’t the far end of the bell curve. I could walk you up and down this street and introduce you to people who’ve had plenty of trouble with their Detroiters, many of whom come back for more. Well, it’s their money.

    Raymondjram is way off base. Look at the facts, apply Occam’s Razor instead of half-baked conspiracy theories and arrive at the simple truth.