Supporters of electrical vehicles say authorities help is essential to their rollout, however new knowledge out of the US reveals Tesla and GM led the class in 2020 with out tax incentives for a lot of the yr. 

Whereas Australia debates how a lot – or how little – taxpayer cash ought to go in direction of supporting the rollout of electrical vehicles, knowledge out of North America has revealed Tesla and Basic Motors have been the top-two sellers of battery-powered vehicles – even with out $US7500 federal tax credit for a lot of the yr.

Within the US, a $7500 tax credit score for each electrical automobile bought expires after an automotive model eclipses 200,000 gross sales.

Tesla handed that milestone on the finish of 2019 whereas Basic Motors hit the 200,000 mark by the top of March 2020.

It means each Tesla bought within the US in 2020 was not eligible for the federal authorities’s $US7500 tax credit score and each Basic Motors electrical automobile bought from April 2020 onwards was not eligible for the federal authorities’s $7500 tax credit score.

Regardless of this, Tesla and Basic Motors topped the electric-car gross sales charts within the US in 2020.

Conversely, electrical vehicles nonetheless eligible for the US federal authorities’s $US7500 tax credit score ranked in the underside half of the Prime 10.

Information compiled by Automotive Information US and analysts Experian confirmed there was an 11 per cent improve in electrical automobile gross sales in North America final yr (up from 227,161 in 2019 to 252,548 in 2020), in an general market that had slumped by 15 per cent (down from 16,755,597 in 2019 to 14,240,036 in 2020).

Inside that surge, Tesla gross sales have been up by 16 per cent (to 172,438 reported as bought within the US in 2020). Certainly, Tesla represented 4 of the highest 5 electrical vehicles bought within the US final yr (see desk on the backside of this story).

The third-placed Chevrolet Bolt (up 20 per cent versus the prior yr) was the biggest-selling non-Tesla within the electric-car class. Different fashions such because the Nissan Leaf, Audi E-Tron, Porsche Taycan, Hyundai Kona, and Kia Niro rounded out the Prime 10.

Though electrical vehicles solely accounted for 1.8 per cent of recent automobile gross sales in North America in 2020 (versus 1.4 per cent in 2019), the business is bracing for an inflow of recent fashions, pushed largely by strict emissions laws being launched in Europe.

A automobile retail skilled, Glenn Mercer, advised Automotive Information US there’ll quickly be a “deluge” of electrical vehicles.

“We’re upping our electrical automobile gross sales penetration forecast for 2025 and past, largely due to increasing provide, not due to surging demand,” Mercer advised Automotive Information US.

Electrical automobile US gross sales in 2020
Tesla Mannequin 3 95,135
Tesla Mannequin Y 71,344
Chevrolet Bolt EV 19,664
Tesla Mannequin X 19,652
Tesla Mannequin S 14,430
Nissan Leaf 8972
Audi E-Tron 7089
Porsche Taycan 3943
Hyundai Kona 2964
Kia Niro 2807

Supply: Automotive Information US, Experian