Walk into a traditional auto dealership today and ask about buying a plug-in car and there is a good chance you will be told that there are only a couple they can show you because they are extremely popular and they can't keep them on the lot. There is also an equally-good chance you'll be told they've only a couple on hand because nobody wants them. This is only one of many surprising discoveries Consumer Reports made during a recent effort to gauge the quality of the plug-in vehicle retail exp
Plug In Vehicle Sales
An automotive history benchmark was achieved in 2011 when more than 20,000 plug-in electric vehicles were sold in the US. Initial ambitious global plans by automakers have been downsized this year as consumers have been more cautious than anticipated to embrace new plug-in vehicle technology. Despite that, Pike Research continues to see indications for significant growth in long-term global demand for plug-ins.
We've all heard the doom and gloom about the failure of plug-in cars, right? It is true that plug-in vehicles will account for substantially less than one percent of new cars sold in the U.S. this year, but that doesn't mean electric-drive vehicle advocates should fret. Not when you look at a bigger picture.
In the battle for plug-in vehicle U.S. sales supremacy, the electric-only Nissan Leaf has emerged the victor once again, beating the Chevrolet Volt for the sixth consecutive month (April, May, June, July, August and now September). Its half-year reign as the plug-in champ has jolted the Leaf well ahead of the Volt in total U.S. sales.
Pike Research has put out an estimate saying that annual sales of plug-in vehicles in the United States will hit 358,959 by 2017. And they're not all going to the usual suspects. Mostly, sure, but not all.
It's true that crystal balls that accurately forecast the future of plug-in vehicles don't exist, but for $2,800 you can buy a copy of a report that concludes with this bit of info: worldwide cumulative plug-in vehicle sales will reach 5.2 million units by 2017.
Once again, General Motors is burying the monthly sales totals for the Chevy Volt. In a press release headlined "May U.S. Retail Sales Rise 9 Percent on Demand for Fuel-Efficient Vehicles," the Volt's sales numbers are not disclosed. Instead, the total – 481 – is in the detailed PDF of the Chevrolet brand sales totals and shows the car is suffering from another month-to-month drop; GM sold 493 in April. Last month, GM told us that drop in Volt sales compared to March's 608 units was
Forecasting the future of the plug-in vehicle segment is not an exact science, but countless firms, including Pike Research, strive to provide accurate predictions. Recently, Pike constructed a model for plug-in vehicles sales broken down by individual states and metropolitan statistical areas.