“It was a small step closer to the 2025 goal,” by which time Norway’s parliament wants all new cars to be emissions-free, Oeyvind Solberg Thorsen, head of the NRF, told a conference.
Still, he cautioned that there was a long way to go since two-thirds of almost 148,000 cars sold in 2018 in Norway were powered by fossil fuel or were hybrids, which have both battery power and an internal combustion engine.
Norway is the leading market for electric vehicles and it keeps showing the rest of the world how fast electric vehicle adoption can happen.
Electric cars 2018
In 2018, Electric vehicles sale grew by 40% in Norway and 1 out of 3 vehicles sold in the market was a zero-emission vehicle.
Øyvind Solberg Thorsen, CEO of the Norwegian Road Traffic Information, said about the 2018 numbers:
“2018 was the year when new passenger cars that go on alternative fuels fortified their strong position in the market […] With this, Norway consolidates itself in the top layer in the world when it comes to selling cars with alternative fuel.”
Earlier this year, we reported that Norway has over 30,000 electric vehicle pre-orders with Tesla Model 3 and the Audi e-tron accounting for most of the reservations.
Norway aims for all new cars to be all-electric by 2025. It’s the most aggressive goal of any market.
Solberg Thorsen also noted that the broader auto market declined in Norway and it actually attributes it to people waiting for more electric options:
“We notified a decline, but especially due to the delivery situation for electric cars and the transition to a new measurement method for consumption, the downward trend has been somewhat stronger than expected.”
Sales of pure electric cars surged 40 percent to 46,092 in 2018 while sales of diesel models fell 28 percent, petrol cars were down 17 percent and hybrids that cannot be plugged in fell 20 percent.
The Institute of Transport Economics (ITE), a consultancy, doubted that the 2025 goal for emissions-free new cars could be reached.
“Strictly speaking I don’t think it’s possible, primarily because too many people don’t have a private parking space and won’t want to buy a plug-in car if they can’t establish a charging point at home,” ITE economist Lasse Fridstroem said.
“We may be able to get to a 75 percent (market share), provided that the tax breaks are maintained,” he added.
The Norwegian Electric Vehicle Association (NEVA), a lobby group, predicted a 100 percent market share was feasible.
“We know that charging access is a real barrier … and there’s also a risk that not enough cars become available,” NEVA head Christina Bu said, adding that some customers must wait for a year or more before their electric vehicle is delivered.