When it comes to electric vehicles, Norway is a world leader. Battery electric vehicles sales accounted for 42% of the market there in 2019. The top sellers were the Tesla Model 3, the VW e-Golf, Nissan Leaf, Audi e-tron, and BMW i3. But why is Norway, a small and northern nation with 5.35 million people, also an EV leader?
The answer is government leadership in the form of policies and EV incentives supporting EV adoption. Some of the current incentives are:
- No annual road tax
- Maximum 50% of the total amount on ferry fares for electric vehicles
- Parking fee for EVs implemented locally but with an upper limit of a maximum 50% of the full price
- Access to bus lanes
- Company car tax reduction reduced to 40%
- No purchase/import taxes
- Exemption from 25% VAT on purchase.
Though this is an impressive list, there have been others as well that are now retired. For example:
- 50% reduced company car tax (2000–2018)
- Rules allowing local authorities to limit bus access to only include EVs that carry one or more passengers (2016)
- Free municipal parking (1999–2017).
Unni Berge, Head of Communication and Public Relations of the Norwegian EV Association, answered some questions for CleanTechnica about all of the EV support.
Why did the Norwegian government decide to be aggressive about promoting zero-emission vehicles?
To fulfill Norway’s climate commitments. Norway manages the shift to EVs by taxing pollution and promoting environmental friendly solutions.
Why did the Norwegian Parliament decide that by 2025 all new cars sold should be zero-emission?
To speed up the transition from a fossil fuel to electric passenger car fleet, hence Norway’s climate commitments.
What percentage of cars in Norway now are either all-electric or gas-electric hybrids?
By the 31st of December 2019, the market share in new car sales reached 42.2 percent for fully electric cars. Ten percent of the total passenger car fleet will shortly be fully electric cars.
Most electricity production there comes from renewables. Is the vision for Norway eventually to have only clean, renewable energy and only electric vehicles?
Norwegian electricity production is already renewable. The Norwegian Parliament has decided that in 2025 all new vehicles will be zero emission. In this way, we will eventually have all the passenger car fleet on renewable energy.
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