An electric vehicle is defined as vehicles that can propel using an electric traction motor powered by electric energy stored in battery packs instead of a conventional internal combustion engine that generates power by burning a mix of fuel and gases. Such vehicles are seen as a possible replacement for current-generation automobiles owing to the rising issue of pollution, global warming, and depleting natural resources. Electric car deployment has been growing rapidly over the past ten years, with the global stock of electric passenger cars passing 5 million in 2018. The sales of electric passenger cars in 2019 crossed 2.1 million units, with China leading the global electric car sales with 1.16 million units. By 2030, the global stock of electric passenger cars is expected to reach 245 million vehicles.
In 2018, China accounted for approximately half of the electric cars sold globally and 99% of electric buses. The country has one of the largest fleets of electric two-wheel bicycles and low-speed electric scooters, with approximately 35 million units sold in 2019. By 2025, China would reduce carbon emissions per unit of economic output by 18%. Also, by 2060, the country plans to go carbon neutral. The Chinese government has targets to have EV sales up to 25% of the car sales by 2025. To achieve the set target, the government had extended the tax exemptions for purchasing an EV by 2023. Automotive companies in China are increasingly investing in the research and development of electric vehicles. For instance, in 2021, Zhejiang Geely Holding Group (Geely Holding), China’s leading privately-owned automotive group, announced a strategic partnership with Baidu to develop connected and intelligent electric vehicles.
Europe is also one of the leading regions with high electric vehicle adoption. The adoption of electric vehicles in Europe has picked up speed majorly due to government support, an improved offering of electric vehicles (EVs) by the automotive industry, and a growing familiarity and willingness to buy on the consumer's side. The sales of electric cars in Europe increased by 64% in 2019 compared to the previous year, with approximately 565,000 BEVs and PHEVs sold. Of this, BEVs account for approximately 361,000 sales. The sales figures of BEVs and PHEVs are expected to increase further in the coming years due to the new average fleet emissions regulation of 95 grams CO2 per kilometer.
The penetration of electric vehicles in Norway is the highest globally, with 54.3% of new cars sold in the country in 2020 comprised of battery-electric cars. The government policies in Norway are very supportive of electric vehicles. According to the Institute of Transport Economics, the Norwegian government has targets of 99% of passenger vehicles, 98% of light commercial vehicles, and 75% of heavy commercial vehicles in Norway to be electric vehicles by 2050. Furthermore, stakeholders of electric mobility in Europe are increasingly investing in new initiatives to develop a sustainable road transport infrastructure that can support electric mobility transition.
North America also has a significant electric vehicles market. This region headquarters to some of the leading OEMs of electric vehicles such as Tesla, Inc., Nikola Corporation, Ford Motor Company, and General Motors Company. Tesla sells the largest number of electric passenger vehicles worldwide with approximately 42 EVs per hour.
In 2019, almost 337,000 units of electric vehicles were sold in North America. The electric vehicles sale in this region is majorly driven by the Tesla Model 3, accounting for almost half of the EV sales in 2019. In 2019, the manufacturers in this region had announced over 20 new BEV and PHEV models such as Tesla Model-Y, Ford Mustang Mach-E, Mercedes Benz EQC SUV, Subaru Evoltis, and BMW X3 / BMW 4 Series GT.
Moreover, in 2021, Tesla is expected to launch its Model S Plaid with a larger 120kWh battery and range of over 520 miles on a single charge. Nissan has a new electric flagship Ariya which will be launched in 2021. The vehicle can travel up to 310 miles on a single charge. Moreover, the companies in this region are actively investing in the research and development of electric vehicles. Nikola Corporation went public in 2020 and raised nearly USD 10 billion to fund plants and research and development (R&D) for Hydrogen fuel-cell- and battery-powered Class 8 trucks.
The major companies in the global electric vehicles market have implemented various strategies to expand their product offerings and global footprints and augment their market shares. The key strategies followed by most companies in the global electric vehicles market were product launches & product development; acquisitions; and agreements, partnerships, and collaborations. New product launches and product development were the most preferred growth strategies adopted by leading players in this market, followed by agreements, partnerships, and collaborations, the second most adopted growth strategy, and expansions.
The global electric vehicles market is dominated by the top five players, namely, Tesla, Inc. (U.S.), BMW Group (Germany), BYD Company Ltd. (China), Volkswagen AG (Germany), and Hyundai Motor Company (South Korea). These players continuously focus on new product development and product launches, acquisitions, and expansions to increase their respective market shares.
In 2019, Tesla, Inc. (U.S.) held the leading position in the global electric vehicles market. The company provides a wide range of electric vehicles in various markets globally, such as North America, Europe, and China. Tesla accounted for the highest sales of electric vehicles in the U.S. and European countries in 2019. Tesla accounted for approximately 70% of the electric vehicle sales in the U.S., with the Tesla Model 3 being the leading EV with 154,836 units sold, followed by the Tesla Model X with 18,500 units sold. Tesla, Inc. has adopted new product launches and product development as the key strategies for expanding its share in the market.
BMW Group held the second leading position in the global electric vehicles market in 2019. The company offers a wide range of electric vehicles through its brands BMW and Mini. Some of the most popular BMW electric vehicles are BMW iX3, BMW i3, BMW 530e, MINI Electric Hardtop 2 Door, and Mini Cooper SE. In 2020, BMW Group delivered 192,662 electrified vehicles (BEVs+PHEVs). The company has 31 production facilities and assembly facilities in 15 countries.
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