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Global Plug-in Vehicle Sales for 2017 H1 + July, August Update

2017 Global plug-in vehicle sales until August were over  649 000 units,  46 % higher than the same period of 2016. These include all global BEV and PHEV passenger cars sales, light trucks in USA/Canada and light commercial vehicle in Europe. In Q2, 64 % of sales were pure electric (BEV) and 36 % were plug-in hybrids (PHEV). The preliminary August results show a 61 % increase over August 2016, with 102 300 units sold, 67 % BEV and 33 % PHEV.

Q2 growth rates were influenced by the accelerating Chinese market, with the USA and Europe following it closely. The Toyota Prius Prime PHEV became an instant best-seller in Japan and pulled that market up. While August is seen as a slow selling month in some large Europe markets, surging sales in other markets, like China, Canada or South Korea, propelled sales to near record levels, with the 102 300 units recorded in August being only 500 units below the all-time record, set last December.

Going forward, exponential growth is expected in the US market, with the ramp up of the Tesla Model 3, while the nationwide availability of the GM Bolt and the introduction of the new Nissan Leaf will also contribute to make it the fastest growing market.

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Growth is Accelerating

Plug-in volumes have more than tripled since 2013 and continuing on last years growth rate of 42 % would mean 8 out of 10 cars sold in 2030 would be Plug-ins. Inconceivable today, but not impossible to happen. The world picture shows that the global market crossed the 1% market share this year, but in some markets it is already far above that: Norway had 35 % plug-in share in Q2, Iceland 9 % and Sweden around 4,5 %.

Amid smallish numbers, the whole sector develops at a rapid pace. The number of public charging locations has doubled within 2 years. The number of available plug-in models has increased from 70 to 130 since 2013. Battery cost have come down by 50 % in the last 3 years. Leading OEM have announced EV portfolios good for 25 % in their sales mix, for the next decade, among them VW and Daimler. And then, there is Tesla ...

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Substancial Growth in all Regions

With the subsidy constraints now a thing of the past, China is back at the global driver seat: It has increased sales by 44 % YoY, adding some 56 000 units to last year result of 128 000 units. The USA (+38%) and Europe (+32%) have also grown significantly in H1, with the remaining markets going even faster, with Japan (+89%), South Korea and Canada leading the way.

Japan owes its return to growth to the start of the Prius Prime, and with the imminent introduction of the new Nissan Leaf, sales can only go higher.

Europe increased 32 % in H1, with Germany speeding up EV adoption, up 119 % YoY, while smaller markets are doing even better, like Iceland (+197%), Luxembourg (+255%) or Slovakia (+800%).

North America grew faster (+38%) than Europe, profiting from the introduction of the GM Bolt and Prius Prime in large volumes.

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