The Numbers say it all: Milestones reached in Feb 2014 Plug-in Electric Car Sales in Canada

Posted in: Green on March 17th, 2014


While February’s electric vehicle sales in Canada will have easily topped year-ago numbers, the plug-in market still faces headwinds in Canada during 2014.

British Columbia hit a milestone of 1,000 plug-in vehicle sales earlier this year. With 4.4 million people, the province has about the same population as Kentucky and represents one of every six Canadian plug-in sales.

Sadly, B.C. tied a millstone around the neck of its electric-car market when it pulled the plug on its Clean Energy Vehicle rebate program once the initial funding was used up in February.

This leaves Ontario and Quebec as the only remaining provinces with electric-vehicle incentives. Fortunately, the pair houses more than 60 percent of the Canadian population between them.

February: Volt conquers all

The Chevy Volt continued its Canadian-market dominance, with 98 sales in February. Easily the Volt’s best-ever Valentine’s month, this almost doubled the 51 delivered a year ago. Well ahead of its year-ago sales pace, the Volt may be able to push back above 1,000 sales in Canada this year.

The Leaf pulled in 64 sales, exactly double its year-ago sales figures. Indeed, this was its second-best monthly sales ever in Canada: great news for the Ghosn-mobile. The Leaf’s achievement is especially impressive, given that it came during the “off-season”: from December to February, auto sales run at about two-thirds the pace of the rest of the year.

The Prius Plug-in and Mitsubishi i-MiEV round out the regularly-reported vehicles with 4 sales each. While the i-MiEV dropped by half from its previous month, the vehicle had an even slower start to 2013, before gaining modest traction from March onwards.

The Prius Plug-in, unfortunately, has continued to fade; and unless the C-Max Energi and Fusion Energi experience similar drop-offs in sales, it looks increasingly likely that both Ford models will surpass it in 2014.

January registration wrap-up

With vehicle registrations now available for the prior month, we can complete our assessment of January plug-in electric vehicle sales for Canada as well.

Tesla started the year with a modest 20 Canadian sales–and while it’s still better than the January 2012 level (15), it’s the lowest monthly sales total since then.

We’ll need a few more months of year-over-year data to know if demand for the Model S has stabilized in Canada, as it may be doing in the United States.

With 22 sales in January, the Smart Electric Drive squeaked past the Model S into third place. Year-over-year comparisons aren’t available yet, as it only went on sale last April. In recent months, the Smart has become one of two plug-ins doing better in Canada than in the United States, once adjustments for population are made.

From October to January, Canadians bought about one-quarter as many Smart EDs as did Americans, despite having just one-tenth the population. (The other Canadian success story is the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, whose American sales are low enough that the Canadian division routinely tops them in absolute numbers.)

In January, Ford also moved another 2 Ford Focus Electrics, and 1 more Chevy Spark and Fisker Karma each joined the Canadian auto fleet.

When Ford provides its semi-annual updates of C-Max Energi and Focus Energi sales, we expect to have seen modest year-over-year growth in January, with Canadian plug-in sales rising from an estimated 163 to roughly 200.

Article Source: Green Car Reports