Which country is leading in the electric car race?

January 21, 2021 by

  • Norway leads the way for electric car adoption
  • UK lagging behind in 17th for EVs-per-person
  • More work to be done to improve uptake
  • Turkey ranks last

Making the switch to an electric vehicle will soon be a requirement for new car buyers in the UK as the 2030 ban on the sale of new diesel and petrol vehicles looms ever closer; but how does the nation fare against other countries in the race towards a fully electric society as it currently stands? We looked at the number of electric car charging points, the number of EVs on the road and the people per electric car based on population figures in order to calculate a ratio. We then let this dictate the country’s size on the world map, to easily view which country is setting the standard when it comes to reducing carbon emissions.

How many electric vehicles does the UK have?

Norway is comfortably leading the global electric car race, with near 18.9 people per electric car

At the time of data collection for the online tool, the UK had 129,828 electric vehicles registered, equating to 513 UK inhabitants for every electric car on the road. Whilst this is certainly not the lowest number in the world, it is evident more needs to be done if the country is to successfully make the switch to electric cars by the proposed deadline. In fact, the UK came 17th out of the countries investigated for the number of electric cars per person. The UK also trailed behind France (192,008) Germany (158,309) and Sweden (133,308) in terms of number of electric vehicles.

While it is certainly true that Alternatively Fuelled Vehicles (AFVs) are cheaper than they once were, with manufacturers releasing competitively priced models to encourage consumers to make the switch, it could well be that a scrappage scheme needs to be introduced here in the UK that will incentivise drivers by making electric cars and hybrid cars even more affordable for those that are likely to be suffering the financial consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic for months and years to come.

Which country has the most electric vehicles per person?

Over 7,000,000 battery-powered vehicles are on the road in the USA

After looking into the number of EVs and the population it was found that Norway was the clear winner of the electric vehicle race with just 18.9 people per electric car. This impressive number is due to the range of incentives and benefits the government has in place, including reductions to the purchase price and road tax. Owners of EVs in Norway also pay at least 50% lower parking and toll road charges.

The top five countries with the most electric vehicles per person are as follows:

  1. Norway – 18.9 (people per electric car)
  2. USA – 46.8
  3. Iceland – 72.6
  4. Sweden – 76.7
  5. Netherlands – 141.4

What country has the least electric vehicles?

China leads the race in Asia, with 417.1 people per electric car

Cyprus (224), Greece (561) and Latvia (729) were found to be the countries with the least electric vehicles on the road, however, Turkey was found to be the country with the least electric cars per person (just one electric car per 54,959.7 people).

The five countries that had the least electric cars per person were found to be:

  1. Turkey – 54,959.7 (people per electric car)
  2. Greece – 19.108.7
  3. Poland – 9,602.9
  4. Romania – 5,818.3
  5. Croatia – 5,558.9

Will we accept electric vehicles globally?

While electric cars are certainly becoming more widely available, accessible, and accepted across the globe, we are still a long way off electric overtaking their petrol and diesel counterparts. Governments across the world need to do more to incentivise consumers to make the switch, whether this is through a scrappage scheme or heavy upfront discounts.

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