Significant growth is expected in the North American plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market this year and beyond, according to a new study by Navigant Research.
In 2016, growth will be driven by sales of the Tesla Model X, the second-generation Volt, and by the introductions of the Chevrolet Bolt, the Prius Prime plug-in hybrid electric vehicle, and the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV later in the year, the study says. Navigant Research expects the North American PEV market in Canada and the U.S. to grow by around 62 percent year-over-year in 2016, nearing 200,000 sales.
Beyond this year, the research firm projects that the introduction of the Tesla Model 3 in late 2017 will likely boost the North American PEV market by around 60% in 2017. The Model 3 is expected to surge in sales and then nearly double the market in 2018 after the first full year of Model 3 sales.
“The long-range BEV under $40,000 is a marked achievement in the industry,” says Scott Shepard, senior research analyst. “This development is expected to significantly increase PEV adoption past the 1 percent penetration rate it has struggled to surpass in all but a few markets.”
The Navigant Research study forecasts plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) sales. These are light-duty passenger vehicles and include battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, for the purpose of this study. The study also provides detailed geographic breakdowns of PEV sales.
The U.S. west coast has been where most PEV sales have been concentrated since 2011. A group of eight zero emissions vehicle (ZEV) states in the northeast is likely to see PEV sales increase considerably as automakers stress battery electric vehicle deployments and marketing efforts to comply with the region’s mandates for PEV production, according to the report. Outside ZEV states, PEV sales is expected to grow most quickly in states with desirable PEV incentives, low vehicle capability and range requirements, and positive demographic characteristics related to PEVs, the study says.
While the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV is expected to play a role PEV sales growth, it will be new to the market as it rolls out in the U.S. later this year. It was the top selling PEV in Europe during May 2016 with 1,719 vehicle registrations, according to the European Alternative Fuels Observatory.