SOUTHFIELD, Mich. — Registrations of fully electric vehicles reached a record 208,000 in the U.S. in 2018, according to recent analysis by IHS Markit, which also noted a growing loyalty among EV buyers.
New registrations for EVs during 2018 more than doubled versus 2017, while the EV market share has increased exponentially over the past three years, according to the data analysis company.
Not surprisingly, 59 percent of EVs were registered in California and nine Section 177 states (Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont) that have adopted the same vehicle emission standards and hence are key markets for such vehicles, according to IHS.
California alone accounted for nearly 46 percent (95,000) of new EV registrations in 2018, according to IHS analysis.
Loyalty rates for EVs also increased, with nearly 55 percent of all new EV owners who returned to market during the fourth quarter of 2018 acquiring (purchasing or leasing) another EV, up from 42 percent in the prior quarter, according to IHS. The trend continued in January, with nearly 70 percent of EV owners returning to market for a new EV during that month.
"EV loyalty rates have been steadily increasing since their introduction by OEMs. This increase over such a short time frame demonstrates that a portion of the U.S. market is highly accepting of this new technology and has a growing comfort level with it," Tom Libby, IHS loyalty principal, said. "As more new models enter the market, we anticipate an even further increase in loyalty to these vehicles."
In addition, IHS forecasts a "considerable increase" in new fully electric models offered in the U.S. market over the next decade, with more than 350,000 new EVs to be sold in the U.S. in 2020, reflecting a 2-percent share of the total U.S. fleet.