EVs Commanded 65% Market Share in Norway in 2021

Electric vehicles (“EVs”) may be among the most popular emerging technologies, but we are still a long way from mass adoption. Although several countries around the world have pledged to transition from internal combustion engine vehicles to zero-emission electric cars in a bid to cut their greenhouse gas emissions, EVs still make a very small percentage of total vehicle sales. This is mainly due to their high upfront costs as well as limited public charging infrastructure.

Norway, however, is leading the charge on EV adoption. Although the Scandinavian country makes for a small market in terms of raw numbers, especially when compared to the juggernaut that is China, it is number one in electric vehicle penetration. In 2021, a whopping two-thirds of total vehicle sales in Norway consisted of electrified cars. This means that of the 176,276 cars sold in 2021, 65% of them were electric, a 25% increase from the previous year when electric cars made up 54% of all new car sales in the country.

With a population of only 5.4 million people, Norway has the most electric vehicles per capita in the world. So while China with its 1.4 billion people makes up the world’s largest car market, Norway has the most electric vehicle penetration. As of December 2021, there were 330,000 registered battery electric vehicles in Norway, and unsurprisingly, Tesla models were the most popular. The California-based EV maker owns 11.6% of Norway’s car market, the Norwegian Road Federation (“NRF”) says, putting it first ahead of Volkswagen (9.6%).

Despite being one of the largest exporters of oil in the world, Norway has gone all-in on electrification. The Scandinavian country has exempted BEVs from most of the fees or taxes that are usually imposed on vehicles to reduce their cost and boost EV adoption. The tax exemption is expected to help accelerate electric vehicle adoption reach as high as 80% of total vehicle sales this year. With Norway’s 2025 deadline for ending the sale of new petrol and diesel-powered cars fast approaching, it seems the country is on track to achieve its electrification goals.

Tesla’s Model 3 was the most popular EV model in Norway last year followed by the Toyota RAV4 hybrid and Volkswagen’s ID.4. On top of Tesla and Volkswagen, several more automakers are looking to break into the Norwegian car market with their own EV models. Nio and Polestar are already making inroads into the country, with the Polestar 2 being the 10th most popular car in 2021 and the Polestar 3 set to debut in 2022.

If global EV sales can rise to the penetration seen in Norway, there will be a bigger cut of the pie for all sector players across the world, including Nikola Corporation (NASDAQ: NKLA) and all other legacy automakers and startups.

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