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[Due to the increasing size of the archives, each topic page now contains only the prior 365 days of content. Access to older stories is now solely through the Monthly Archive pages or the site search function.]

ZSW: more than 400,000 plug-in cars on road worldwide at beginning of 2014; 2x 2013

April 01, 2014

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Accumulated number of xEVs in leading global markets. Annual growth rate over the past three years is more than 100%. Click to enlarge.

At the beginning of 2014, there were more than 400,000 electric cars—battery-electric, plug-in hybrid, and range-extended electric vehicles—on the road worldwide, according to an analysis by Zentrums für Sonnenenergie- und Wasserstoff-Forschung Baden-Württemberg (ZSW) in Germany. This represents a doubling from 2013, according to ZSW.

According to ZSW, the number of registered electric vehicles worldwide has increased at an annual rate of more than 100% over the last three years. At the beginning of 2012, nearly 100,000 of the cars were on the roads worldwide. This rose year later to a total of 200,000, and then to 405,000 units earlier this year.

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BYD’s Qin plug-in hybrid the best selling automotive EV in China

March 21, 2014

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2nd-generation Dual Mode (DM II) plug-in hybrid system of the Qin. Click to enlarge.

BYD’s second-generation Dual-Mode, plug-in hybrid electric sedan Qin has posted a second month of strong sales in February. Trends in March now make it “China’s Best-Selling Electric Vehicle” according to China’s National Passenger Car Association. In the first weeks of 2014, more than 6,000 Qin vehicles were sold, accounting for more than one-half of the Chinese new-energy vehicle market.

Analysts are not expecting sales to slow, as both Shanghai and Beijing announced earlier this month that they will now permit BYD new energy vehicles to qualify for local municipality green-vehicle incentives and be licensed in those regions.

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Toyota Europe hybrid sales up 43% year-on-year in 2013; almost 18.5% of total TME sales, 28% in W. Europe

March 04, 2014

At the Geneva Motor Show, Toyota Motor Europe (TME) announced that European sales of hybrid vehicles reached an all-time high in 2013 totaling 156,863 units, up 43% year-on-year. Hybrid models now represent 18.5% total TME sales, including several countries outside of the EU. In Western Europe, 28% of all Toyota and Lexus vehicles sold are hybrid models.

In 2013 total Toyota Motor Europe sales reached 847,540 vehicles, an increase of 9,569 units from 2012, equalling a 0.2 percentage point share gain to 4.7%. This progress is mainly due to the excellent sales performance of hybrid models.

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Honda to end production of the Insight hybrid, commits to the expansion of hybrid offerings in the US

March 01, 2014

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Annual sales of the second-generation Honda Insight. Data: Honda. Click to enlarge.

Honda announced that while the US model Insight will be available at dealerships in the US through the end of the year, production of the hybrid will end in summer 2014.

Honda said the move reflects its reinforced commitment to a clear product strategy focused on further advancing fuel-efficient and alternative-fuel vehicle technologies that are better aligned with customer needs and that strengthen the company’s US sales momentum. The Insight, introduced in 2009, had posted steadily decreasing sales, from a high of 20,962 units in 2010 down to 4,802 units in 2013.

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Tesla shipped 6,892 Model S units in Q4 2013, 22,477 full year; battery Gigafactory announcement next week

February 20, 2014

Tesla Motors announced record deliveries of 6,892 Model S vehicles worldwide in the fourth quarter of 2013, with 22,477 vehicles in the full year. For the quarter, non-GAAP revenue was $761 million, up 26% from Q3. GAAP revenue for Q4 was $615 million, up 43% from Q3. Q4 non-GAAP net income was $46 million, or $0.33 per share, while Q4 GAAP net loss was $16 million or $(0.13) per share.

The differences between GAAP and non-GAAP are primarily due to lease accounting for resale value guarantee (RVG) and employee stock-based compensation as a result of the increase in stock price last year. The results show Tesla moving closer to break-even or profitability even on a GAAP basis. (GAAP net loss per share for the quarter ending 30 Sep 2013 was $(0.32), and for Q4 of 2012, $(0.79). For the full 2013 calendar year, net loss per share $(0.62), while for all of 2012, it was $(3.69).

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Worldwide sales of Toyota hybrids top 6 million units

January 15, 2014

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Annual global sales of TMC hybrids. Click to enlarge.

Cumulative global sales of Toyota’s hybrid vehicles topped the 6 million unit mark as of 31 December 2013, reaching 6.072 million units. The latest million-unit milestone was achieved in the fastest time yet for Toyota, taking just nine months.

As of this month, Toyota sells 24 hybrid passenger car models and one plug-in hybrid model in approximately 80 countries and regions around the world. Within the next two years, Toyota will launch a total of 15 new hybrid vehicles worldwide, including the new Harrier Hybrid in Japan on 15 January and the new Highlander Hybrid in the United States in the near future.

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Tesla delivered ~5,500 Model S worldwide in Q3, more than 1,000 to European customers; non-GAAP profit narrows and GAAP loss widens from Q2

November 06, 2013

In its third quarter results, Tesla Motors reported delivering about 5,500 Model S units worldwide, with more than 1,000 of those going to European customers. On a total unit basis, that exceeded the second quarter’s 5,150 models which went to the North America market. (Earlier post.)

CEO Elon Musk said that Tesla is continuing to expand production and plans to deliver slightly less than 6,000 Model S vehicles in Q4, which would increase total expected deliveries to 21,500 vehicles worldwide for 2013. The company is now producing 550 cars per week.

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Ford takes lead with plug-in hybrid sales in US in October; 34% of market

November 05, 2013

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Monthly sales of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles in 2013 in the US. The Ford line (blue) represents combined sales of the Fusion and C-MAX Energi models. Click to enlarge.

With a significant increase in monthly sales for each unit, Ford took the top spot in plug-in hybrid vehicle sales in October with the C-MAX Energi (1,092 units) and the Fusion Energi (1,087) units posting a combined 2,179 units for the month. This represented 34% of the total plug-in hybrid market

The combination of the two PHEV Energi models pushed Ford just beyond the second-place Prius PHV (2,095 units, for 33% of the market) and the third-place Volt (2,022 units, for 32% of the market.) The Honda Accord PHEV was a distant fourth (71 units.)

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PwC’s Autofacts forecasts global light vehicle assembly to reach 81.8M units in 2013, up 3.3% from 2012

October 30, 2013

Global light vehicle assembly will reach 81.8 million units in 2013, representing a 3.3% year-over-year gain, according to Autofacts, PwC’s automotive analyst group. While there has been speculation around the long-awaited recovery of the European Union (EU), 2013 is poised to mark a turning point, setting the stage for recovery in 2014. This will bring the region in sync with the recent recoveries in North America and Eastern Europe and the continued growth in developing Asia-Pacific and South America, according to the consultancy.

Consumer demands and regulatory requirements are motivating the global automotive industry to push ahead with technological breakthroughs on a larger scale,” said Rick Hanna, PwC’s global automotive leader. “Innovation ranging from new investments in lightweight materials, advanced drivetrains and infotainment systems to fresh approaches in engaging customers, will continue to shape the industry. The automakers that effectively leverage high-tech advancements in vehicles, mobile devices and data analytics will likely gain a competitive advantage in this dynamic market.

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Musk says Tesla making significant investments in Germany: Superchargers, service centers and free tuning for better Autobahn performance

October 23, 2013

Elon Musk, co-founder and CEO of Tesla Motors announced that his company will make “a significant investment” in Germany, focused on expanding the Supercharger network, expanding the number of service centers, and high-speed tuning for the Model S for improved performance on the Autobahn.

Deliveries of Model S in Europe started this summer. Citing data from Germany’s Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt (KBA), a report in the International Business Times noted that Tesla had sold 98 Model S units in August and September. lagging sales of other EVs in the country. This performance is in contrast to Norway, where the Model S was the best selling vehicle of any model last month, and in the Netherlands, the car’s second-strongest Northern European market.

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Tesla leads with transfer of ZEV credits for year ending 30 Sep 2013

October 17, 2013

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Tesla by far dominated the transfer of ZEV credits in California in 2012. Data: ARB. Click to enlarge.

Between 1 October 2012 and 30 September 2013, electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla Motors transferred out 1,311.520 ZEV (zero emission vehicle) credits, according to the latest report by the California Air Resources Board (ARB)—by far, the largest of any automaker in the state. The next closest was Toyota, with 507.5 credits; Nissan only transferred 25 credits, and those generated from its PZEVs—not from the LEAF EV.

As of 30 September, Tesla still had a balance of 276.080 credits, according to the data; behind the six major automakers, who are mostly banking their credits.

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Ford doubles electric drive market share in US from 2012 to 2013; surging with plug-in hybrids

October 04, 2013

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Ford’s changing share of the hybrid-electric, plug-in hybrid electric, battery-electric vehicle segments and total ED market in the US in 2012 and YTD 2013. Data: EDTA, Ford Motor. Click to enlarge.

Ford Motor Company’s C-platform electric drive strategy has driven an increase in Ford’s overall electric drive market share (hybrid, plug-in hybrid and battery-electric) from 7.3% in calendar year 2012 to 14.7% for the first nine months of 2013.

Specifically, out of 487,480 electric drive units sold in 2012 (according to data from the Electric Drive Transportation Association), Ford accounted for 35,719 units (7.3%). From January through September 2013, total electric drive sales were 457,704 units (EDTA); Ford’s electric drive sales climbed to 67,232 units during that period (14.7%).

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Ford builds 2-millionth EcoBoost engine, with take rates growing globally; expected to exceed Ford’s global diesel production

September 18, 2013

Ford Motor Company reported that it has built its two-millionth EcoBoost engine since the launch of the line in 2009. With customer demand exceeding its initial projections, Ford now expects EcoBoost production to exceed its global diesel engine production. More than 100,000 EcoBoost engines are now produced every month, with a target of 1.2 million for 2013, up more than 60% from 2012.

EcoBoost technology combines smaller overall size with turbocharging, direct injection and variable valve timing to deliver significantly improved performance and fuel economy. Ford says its EcoBoost engines deliver up to 20% better fuel economy than larger-displacement gasoline engines.

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August sales of plug-in hybrids in US up 83% from July, up 65% y-o-y

September 06, 2013

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Monthly sales of plug-in hybrids in US. Data: EDTA, automakers. Click to enlarge.

Sales of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles in the US in August reached 6,407 units—up 83% from the prior month and up 65% from results in August 2012. jumped 83% from the prior month to 6,407 units. The results marked the strongest monthly results to date for plug-in hybrids (i.e., not conventional hybrids, and not battery-electric vehicles.)

Sales were led by the Chevy Volt, with 3,351 units, up 18.4% from its August 2012 results of 2,831 units. Jan-August 2013 sales for the Volt were 14,994 units, up 11.1% from the same period in 2012. The Prius PHV put in a very strong second-place showing of 1,791 units in August 2013, up 65% from 1,047 units in August 2012. Its sales for the first 8 months of 2013 were 6,822 units, up 11.6% from the same period in 2012.

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Ricardo study predicts that BRIC automotive markets will be eclipsed by the “Rising-15”

September 05, 2013

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Positioning the Rising 15. Source: Ricardo Consulting. Click to enlarge.

A study by Ricardo Strategic Consulting has concluded that while sluggish automotive demand in Europe, Japan and North America will be balanced by the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) markets through 2020, thereafter the ‘Rising-15’ nations become the engine for profitable growth—assuming political stability.

Ricardo’s Rising-15 automotive markets include: Argentina; Egypt; Indonesia; Iran; Malaysia; Mexico; Morocco; Nigeria; Peru; the Philippines; South Africa; Thailand; Turkey; Ukraine; and Vietnam.

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Top 15 Nissan LEAF markets in US in 2013

August 26, 2013

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Top 15 LEAF market year-to-date in 2013. Source: Nissan Click to enlarge.

Nissan provided a list of the top 15 markets in the US for the Nissan LEAF battery-electric vehicle. Nissan LEAF sales in the United States are up by 335% year-over-year since the launch of the enhanced 2013 model in March. (Earlier post.) Nissan has sold 11,703 LEAFs in the US during the first 7 months of 2013—an increase of 230% from the 3,543 units for the same period in 2012.

Four of the top 15 markets are in California: San Francisco (1), Los Angeles (2), San Diego (7) and Sacramento (8). Another three are on the West Coast and in Hawaii: Seattle (4), Portland (5), and Honolulu (6).

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Hybrids take 7% of California market in 1H 2013; PHEVs 0.7%; EVs 1.1%

August 17, 2013

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Hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and battery electric vehicle share of the California retail market. Source: California Auto Outlook. Click to enlarge.

Hybrid vehicle market share (excluding plug-in hybrids) in California increased to 7% in the first half of 2013, up from 6.2% in 2012, according to the California Auto Outlook for the second quarter of 2013. Plug-in hybrid market share was an estimated 0.7%, while battery electric vehicle market share hit 1.1%. California Auto Outlook is sponsored by the California New Car Dealers Association.

For the first six months of 2013, hybrid registrations (excluding plug-ins), were 59,300 units; plug-in hybrids, 5,736 units; and battery electric vehicles, 9,708 units.

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Tesla sold 5,150 Model S units in North America in Q2; non-GAAP profit $26M, GAAP loss $31M

August 08, 2013

Tesla Motors reported strong sales results for the second quarter, posting 5,150 units of the battery-electric Model S in North America, along with a significant improvement in automotive non-GAAP gross margin. Tesla had projected deliveries of 4,500 units.

Q2 revenues were $551 million on a non-GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) basis and $405 million on a GAAP basis. While deliveries increased by 5% from Q1, overall revenues were flat due to an expected drop in ZEV credit revenue, falling to $51 million in the second quarter from $68 million in the first. On a non-GAAP basis, net income was 26 million or $0.20 per share, excluding one-time and non-cash items, and the effect of lease accounting. Including those, GAAP net loss for the quarter was $31 million or $(0.26) per share.

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Ford says its own RWD hybrid system for pickups and SUVs to be ready “later this decade”

July 24, 2013

Following the conclusion of a collaboration with Toyota (earlier post), Ford is moving forward with the development of a rear-wheel-drive hybrid system on its own; the company says that it will have the hybrid system ready “later this decade” on rear-wheel-drive Ford pickups and SUVs. The new hybrid system will be based on an all-new architecture.

In August 2011, Ford and Toyota signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the joint development of a new rear-wheel drive hybrid system for light trucks and SUVs. (Earlier post.) Following the completion of their feasibility study for collaboration, the two companies agreed to develop hybrid systems individually. Ford has been rapidly gaining share in the hybrid market in the US; Ford’s share of the US electrified vehicle market has grown to nearly 16% in the first half of 2013—a 12-point gain over last year.

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Renault-Nissan sells its 100,000th electric car

July 23, 2013

The Renault-Nissan Alliance has sold its 100,000th electric car globally. Renault-Nissan has sold more zero-emission cars than all other major automakers combined, the automakers noted.

More than 71,000 people worldwide have bought Nissan LEAF, which made its debut in 2010; LEAF makes up more than half of all global sales of pure electric cars. More than 80% of LEAF buyers globally exchange cars from other automakers, making the LEAF one of the industry’s most innovative “conquest vehicles.” The majority of customers say the LEAF, which consumes no petroleum whatsoever, has replaced their conventional car for daily use.

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Worldwide Prius sales top 3-million mark; Prius family sales at 3.4 million

July 03, 2013

Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) announced that as of the end of June, worldwide cumulative sales of the Prius gasoline-electric hybrid vehicle (generations I, II and III) passed the 3-million mark. (The figure is based on worldwide cumulative sales through the end of May 2013 plus June sales in the US.) Total global Prius nameplate sales (the expanded Prius family) are at 3.436 million units.

TMC launched the Prius in 1997. The second generation followed in 2003, and the third generation in 2009. From the first to third generation, TMC greatly reduced the cost of the hybrid system by two-thirds and increased fuel efficiency from 28 km/L to 38 km/L (65.0 mpg US to 89.4 mpg US, as measured using the 10-15 test cycle of the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism). In addition, TMC applied for 1,261 patents relating to the third-generation Prius.

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EPRI: lifetime cost of ownership of plug-ins is roughly comparable with conventional vehicles

June 11, 2013

Consumers who purchase an electric vehicle will find that lifetime costs to own the vehicle are competitive with conventional and hybrid vehicles, according to an analysis conducted by the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). The study is based on pricing for the automotive products for the 2013 model year.

The baseline analysis relies on a cost-of-ownership model that examines only current vehicles; current fuel prices; and a relatively conservative set of customer values. In particular, the report analyzes the Chevrolet Volt and Nissan LEAF in comparison with a limited set of current conventional and hybrid vehicles. The EPRI analysis focused on the LEAF and Volt because the plug-in vehicles have been on the market the longest, have generated the greatest sales volume and provide data on real-world performance.

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IEE forecasts electric-drive LDVs could constitute between 2 to 12% of US vehicle stock by 2035

April 22, 2013

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Forecast by LDV scenario (millions). Source: IEE. Click to enlarge.

Under its most conservative of scenarios, more than 5 million light-duty electric-drive vehicles will be on the road in the US by 2035, according to a new forecast by IEE, an institue of the Edison Foundation. According to the report, “Forecast of On-Road Electric Transportation in the US (2010-2035)”, this figure could increase to as high as 30 million EVs depending on advances in battery technology.

IEE developed three general scenarios for electric transportation: low, medium, and high. These scenarios provide projections based on EIA’s Annual Energy Outlook (AEO) 2012 Reference Case, advances in battery technology (e.g., improved battery chemistry that allows for faster and deeper charging and reductions in battery cell and other component costs), and oil prices increasing to $200 per barrel:

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Toyota cumulative global hybrid sales pass 5M, nearly 2M in US

April 17, 2013

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Cumulative global sales of TMC hybrid models as of 31 March 2013. Click to enlarge.

Cumulative global sales of Toyota Motor Corporation’s (TMC’s) hybrid vehicles—including plug-in hybrids—topped the 5 million unit mark as of 31 March 2013, reaching 5.125 million units. Of the global total, sales in the US have accounted for nearly 2 million units (1,951,243).

Last year, hybrid vehicles accounted for 14% of TMC’s global vehicle sales and 40% of its vehicle sales in Japan. As of this month, TMC sells 19 hybrid passenger car models and one plug-in hybrid model in approximately 80 countries and regions around the world. Between now and the end of 2015, Toyota will introduce 18 new hybrid models and expects global sales of its hybrids to be at least 1 million units a year in the same period. TMS forecasts that about one-third of those will be sold in the United States.

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Tesla likely Q1 US PEV leader with 4,750+ sales in North America; Nissan surges with LEAF in March in US

April 04, 2013

With the US sales numbers for the first quarter of 2013 in, Tesla appears to be the leading seller of plug-in vehicles for that period, with more than 4,750 units of the model S sold in North America. (Earlier post.) (Tesla doesn’t break out sales by country at this time, so there are no US-specific figures from the company.)

GM posted sales of 4,244 Volt extended range electric vehicles in the US in the second quarter, representing an 8.4% increase year-on-year. March sales of the Volt in the US were weaker in March, with 1,478 units, compared to 2,289 units in March 2012, a decrease of 35.4%. (In Canada, GM sold 177 Volts in Q1, and 82 in March.)

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