2013 EV sales figures and 2014 price cuts

So the EV and plug-in hybrid sales estimates for 2013 are in.

Unfortunately there really weren’t any major additions to the big three that dominate sales. The Chevy Volt, the Nissan Leaf, and the Tesla Model S remain the three cars that have found any market traction.

Dana Hull at The San Jose Mercury News estimates the following this year:

1. Nissan Leaf: 22,000
2. Chevy Volt: more than 21,000
3. Tesla Model S: at least 21,500*
* Tesla’s figures include international sales, though most of its cars are sold in the U.S.

If anything, the breakout success has been Tesla’s Model S, where demand outstripped supply leading to waitlists for the vehicle. Still, these sales figures remain very small when compared to the 15 million new cars and light trucks that will be sold this year.

There are 17 EVs or plug-in hybrids now on the market, and what we’re seeing is that it really does take a marketing push combined with plenty of time to educate customers about the potential of EVs.

Next year will be interesting because automakers are cutting EV and plug-in hybrid sticker prices across the board. The plug-in Prius, which I still believe has a lot of potential due to the brand recognition of the Prius, got a 2K price cut to put it under 30K. And the Mitsubishi MiEV is now just 16K.

I’m not expecting huge sales next year but all these price cuts should further stoke the market for EVs and plug-ins.

Relevant Analyst

Adam Lesser

Analyst Gigaom Research

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