2017 US Plug-In EV Sales: Market Grows 26%, Record 1.6% Share In December

The Tesla Model S edged out the Chevy Bolt for top-spot in the USA
The Tesla Model S edged out the Chevy Bolt for top-spot in the USA

In December, plug-in sales reached a new all-time record of 26,107, which was 5.3% more than a year ago. Records are usually set in December because of the additional wave of consumers who seek to quickly gain back the federal tax credit of up to $7,500 on purchases.

Another new record in December was a plug-in market share of more than 1.6%. We are confident that the level of 1% is captured, and year 2018 will open this to way beyond 2%.

In 2017, total sales nearly hit 200,000. InsideEVs estimates 199,826, which translates to growth of 26%. We expect 2018 to bring between over 300,000, if not more depending on the Model 3 production ramp.

Average market share in 2017 hit a new record of 1.16%.

In 2017, five models exceeded 20,000 sales. The Tesla Model S reached ≈27,060, which is slightly down compared to the previous year (≈28,896).

Second best was the Chevrolet Bolt EV (23,297) thanks to a new record of 3,227 in December!

Third on the all-electric podium was the Tesla Model X (≈21,315). It’s a great success for Tesla to place two cars in the Top 3. The Model X noted small growth compared to ≈18,223 in 2016.

The Toyota Prius Prime (20,936) managed to take fourth place, just edging out the Chevrolet Volt (20,349) in the ‘best selling plug-in hybrid’ class.

The Nissan LEAF, with the discontinued and discounted old generation running out of stock, managed just 11,230, but in 2018 the next generation will be major contender for the top rank.

Click Table to enlarge
2017 Monthly Sales Chart For The Major Plug-In Automakers – *Estimated Tesla Sales Numbers – Reconciled on Quarterly Totals, ** Estimated (Based on State/Rebate Data and other reports), Credit to HybridCars.com for assistance on Hyundai/some BMW data.
2017 Monthly Sales Chart For The Major Plug-In Automakers – *Estimated Tesla Sales Numbers – Reconciled on Quarterly Totals, ** Estimated (Based on State/Rebate Data and other reports), Credit to HybridCars.com for assistance on Hyundai/some BMW data.

Overall, the Chevrolet Volt remains the best selling plug-in car since 2010 – with 133,838 were delivered. Weak Nissan LEAFsales of late slowed progress, and with 114,827, the Japanese flagship is now behind the Tesla Model S118,147.

We believe that in 2018 those three models will get closer to each other in cumulative sales rank, as the leader Chevy Volt is showing weakness (down 20%+ in 2017) strictly due to market competition, while the LEAF will certainly surge in 2018, and the Model S has been America’s best seller for the past 3 years.

Other fast movers are the Toyota Prius Prime at 63,281 (together with previous generation), the Tesla Model X at 39,752 and the Chevrolet Bolt EV at 23,876.

In 2018, Tesla Model 3 shouldn’t have any problem in joining the Top 10, as less than 30,000 will be needed to enter those ranks. InsideEVs.com

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