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One of the first Tesla Model Y display vehicles in Australia. Photo by Majella Waterworth.


Australian Electric Vehicle Market Set To Soar

In 2020, electric vehicles made up 0.8% of new vehicle sales in Australia. In the first quarter of this year, they made up more than 2% of the market. After a poor showing in quarter 2 because of the Covid-19 lockdown in Shanghai, the second half of 2022 looks like it has a rocket under it. The vast majority of EVs sold in Australia have been Tesla Model 3s. The Y has now arrived, though, and the order books are full. It looks like the Australian electric vehicle market is set to soar.

Australian Electric Vehicle Market

Tesla Model Y captures another customer. Photo by David Waterworth

Speaking at the recent Australian Clean Energy Summit in Sydney, Tesla Chairwoman Robyn Denholm said, “We now have more than 26,500 Teslas on Australian roads, and the momentum is there.”

“I personally wouldn’t be surprised if we double that number by the end of the year,” she said.

Her comments have led to speculation that over 20,000 Model Ys have been ordered and will be delivered by the end of the year. Certainly there has been a rapid increase in the number of second-hand Model 3s for sale, and huge interest has been in evidence at the various Tesla showrooms.

It isn’t just Tesla ramping up its exports to Australia. Although delayed, the BYD Atto3 is still on track to deliver large numbers of cars by the end of the year. Other carmakers are bringing their vehicles to market in much smaller numbers, but will add to the total. MG, Hyundai, BMW, Volvo, and Kia are also contributing to the growth. And let’s not forget the Polestar 2.

Australian Electric Vehicles

David and Polestar 2. Photo by Majella Waterworth.

The tsunami of electric vehicles coming to Australia’s shores will put more pressure on improving the charging network, greening the grid, and investigating a fuel emissions policy.

New Zealand was held up by Denholm as a good example for introducing legislation that encouraged the movement towards higher EV take up. “Until recently New Zealand was in a very similar position to Australia, but they passed two excellent laws,” she said. “The first was the clean car discount scheme, which has been in operation for just over a year. And the EV sales have nearly tripled. The second is sensible fuel efficiency standards, which begin in earnest next year. And we’ll see them catch up to Europe and other markets within six years.”

I can’t wait to review the figures in a few months’ time.

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David Waterworth is a retired teacher who divides his time between looking after his grandchildren and trying to make sure they have a planet to live on. He is long on Tesla [NASDAQ:TSLA].


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