While the automotive industry was impacted negatively by the pandemic and the difficult circumstances that we all find ourselves in globally, the electric vehicle still made a forward leap in many countries during this period. According to an estimate from EV-Volumes (automobile industry tracker), plug-in electric cars made up 4.2% of sales of light vehicles globally in 2020. This is an increase from the 2.5% in 2019.
These plug-in electric vehicles still make up a relatively small percentage of the total number of new cars sold globally. However, they are likely to be the only new vehicles available for sale in some countries in the coming two decades. Many countries are involved in the race for electric cars and are starting to announce plans to do away with the sale of internal combustion vehicles to reduce carbon emissions. This switch to electric vehicles is picking up pace in many countries, and some of these countries are:
Norway is the country that is currently most friendly and open to the prospect of electric cars taking over. It is the first country to start discussions about all new cars powered electrically (via hydrogen fuel cells or batteries). This Scandinavian country now offers a highly generous incentive for people to buy electric vehicles and has built up an excellent charging infrastructure to support electric cars.
Currently, electric cars account for 24 percent of average sales of new cars in Norway. However, this one country also has some politicians pushing to take the figures up to 100 percent by 2025. This country’s objective was first proposed by Ola Elvestuen – Chair of the Committee on the Environment and Energy and member of Parliament – in August 2020. It is a goal that the major political parties in the country have agreed to and will ensure the complete ban of new internal combustion vehicles.
One of the reasons Norway successfully and effectively promotes the use of electric cars is their policy measures such as toll exemptions, tax exemptions, etc. The model which this country uses can’t be transferred easily to other countries. Firstly, the country poses heavy taxes on car registration and vehicle import duties, making these cars more expensive in other countries like the US. Waiving these taxes and duties for electric cars means that the country is subsidizing the purchase of electric vehicles at an unaffordable level for countries like the US.
The Netherlands has also started to move towards ending the sale of new diesel and gasoline-powered vehicles by 2025. The Parliament in the Netherlands already passed a motion to this effect, although the Senate still needs to approve it before it becomes a law. Under this proposed rule, there is still room for hybrids and other internal combustion vehicles that were sold and in public before 2025 are going to be grandfathered for operations till their lives end.
Similar to Norway, Netherlands also offers a significant incentive for electric car buyers. In this country, the sales of electric cars make up a more substantial percentage of overall sales than in many other countries.
The Netherlands, like Norway, has a concentrated population, and this means that the average commuting distance is short and won’t tax electric cars moving a short-range.
Germany is also one of those countries topping the chart for electric car switches. However, unlike the Netherlands, it does not have a high percentage of sales. That’s currently still relatively low. However, Rainer Baake, the country’s deputy economic minister, has suggested that the government should go ahead with plans to ban the sale of diesel and gasoline-powered vehicles by 2030. According to Baake, the only way Germany can meet its goal of reducing carbon emission by 80 percent in the year 2050 is to have a fleet of emission-free cars.
Currently, the sales of electric cars make up for less than one percent of sales of new vehicles in Germany. However, the country has set up an incentives program to boost electric car sales in the country.
India makes this list as it is one of the most ambitious goals for electric vehicles. However, unlike the other countries mentioned earlier, India’s government is not ending the sale of new internal combustion vehicles. Instead, they are making plans to ensure that by 2030 all vehicles in the country are elastic. This means that there will be substantial incentive programs that will make people go for electric vehicles at an affordable rate.
However, there is a big challenge for this proposal in a country like India. Being one of the most populous countries globally, there is a problem with instigating the mass adoption of electric vehicles and creating the infrastructure necessary to support the mass use of these vehicles. In addition, the country still relies heavily on fossil fuels for power generation, and many homes in the country cannot access electricity.
However, India has one of the worst problems with air pollution amongst other countries globally, and this may prove to be a good incentive to ensure that all vehicles are electric.
Electric vehicles are the future of the automobile industry, and many countries have started to switch to electric vehicles, with Norway leading the pack.
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Thomas Jackson is a professional freelance content writer. He has also worked as a college paper writer for a dissertation writing service, and is also an active member of several writing clubs in New York. He has written several songs since he was a child. He gets inspiration from the live concerts he does in front of close friends and family members.