These numbers are coming to us via a recent article published by Yahoo! Autos that stated that almost 10% of California’s new car sales are now electric vehicles… however, that figure included non-plug-in hybrids, which most of us wouldn’t group into the “electric vehicles” category.
This confusion of “electrified vehicles” (inclusive of hybrids) with plug-in electric cars is of course nothing new, but it does seem to still be a relatively common issue. “Electric vehicles,” for most of us covering the industry, refers specifically to vehicles that can plug directly into a power supply and charge a battery pack that can then be used to run the vehicle, whereas an “electrified vehicle” is simply any vehicle that possesses an electric motor providing any torque in its powertrain.
With regard to the recent figures out of California, regardless of the mix-up, the numbers are still pretty good. Battery-electric vehicles constitute 1.5% of new vehicle sales in the state, plug-in hybrids constitute 1.7% of new sales, and conventional hybrids constitute 6.4% of new sales.
While certainly good numbers, and an improvement on previous years, the gap between EVs and conventional vehicles is still enormous with regard to new sales.
With gas prices now falling (though they will boomerang back up into the high price range at some point…) there’s probably a good chance that hybrid and EV sales will stagnate or drop in the near-term — stopping the growth of the past few years in its tracks.
With the high cost of oil extraction in much of the world (nearly everywhere but the Middle East), though, the price of gas is inevitably going to rise quite “high.” Given the great advantage of EVs with regard to running costs (as compared to gas-powered vehicles), and falling battery costs, the continued long-term growth of the market is practically a given.
Image Credit: California Flag via Flickr CC
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