US leads way on rising global EV sales
A new study by the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research in Germany has found that around 320,000 electric cars were registered last year, with the Nissan LEAF, Tesla Model S and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV leading the way.
Over 740,000 electric cars are now on the road globally.
The US saw one of the highest absolute growth rates with another 117,000 EVs registered in 2014, bringing the total to around 290,000, a 69% increase. The USA continued to claim the top spot for overall EV take-up.
Registrations in China also increased, with nearly 54,000 more electric vehicles bought in 2014, bringing the count up to just short of 100,000, an increase of around 120%. China's fleet puts it third in the league table, just behind Japan, where the 100,000 mark in electric cars has been exceeded, but at a relatively low growth rate of 45%.
The researchers added that market incentives in these countries have helped push up registrations.
In contrast, a lack of incentives has resulted in Germany taking just seventh place in absolute numbers (around 29,600 cars) and eighth in new registrations (around 11,700).
As in preceding years, Norway remains a pioneer this trend. The number of electric cars there rose 113% to a total of 43,400. Some 2.64 million automobiles are registered in the Scandinavian country, just over 1.6% – making it a world leader in percentage share.