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Australian electric vehicle sales almost tripled in 2021

Australian electric vehicle sales almost tripled in 2021

New sales figures released by the Electric Vehicle Council (EVC) have revealed that Australia is on the brink of an electric vehicle (EV) economic boom – if the federal government is willing to take more action.

According to the latest EVC data, sales of plug-in EVs almost tripled in the past year from 6,900 in 2020 to 20,665 in 2021. EVs now account for 1.95% market share of new vehicles, up from 0.78% in 2020.

EVC chief executive Behyad Jafari said the boost in sales was being driven by positive policy change at a state level and that momentum could now be built upon.

“The penny has now well and truly dropped on how good electric vehicles are,” Mr Jafari said.

“Most people in the car market will now be considering an electric option. The role of government is to help them make the jump.”

In November last year, the federal government announced a significant boost to its investment in EV charging infrastructure, while monetary incentives for EV buyers were left to the state governments.

Mr Jafari said governments that take the path of encouragement will capture myriad societal benefits including cleaner air, reduced respiratory illness, a smaller carbon footprint and quieter roads. However, governments that lag will turn themselves into “a dumping ground for old tech, dirty vehicles”.

“It’s great that some state governments have received the global message, but at a national level, we’re stuck in the past,” he said.

“We desperately need the federal government to introduce Australian EV rebates alongside fuel efficiency standards, just like other developed nations. If we get these changes, you’ll see sales figures really rocket ahead.

“After so many wasted years, Australia’s a long way back from the pack, but then again, the cool thing about electric cars is how quickly they move from zero to a hundred.”

Earlier this month, the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries (FCAI) released their annual new car sales figures for the 2021 calendar year, which also revealed a boost in electric vehicles sales on 2020 figures.

FCAI chief executive Tony Weber said: “We must recognise the policy objective should be to lower our CO2 emissions rather than meeting sales targets of particular types of technology. 

“The FCAI maintains the need for national leadership in the form of a technology agnostic and achievable emissions reduction target.” 

According to the EVC new sales figures, the top 10 battery and plug-in hybrid EV sales in 2021 were recorded as follows:

  1. Tesla Model 3 with 12,094 sales
  2. MG ZS with 1,388 sales
  3. Mitsubishi Outlander with 592 sales
  4. MG HS with 580 sales
  5. Porsche Taycan with 531 sales
  6. Hyundai Kona with 505 sales
  7. Volvo XC40 with 495 sales
  8. Hyundai Ioniq with 407 sales
  9. Nissan Leaf with 367 sales
  10. Mercedes-Benz EQA with 367 sales

If you’re in the market for an EV or other fuel-efficient vehicle, you may want to consider financing with a green car loan. Many lenders offer green car loans to borrowers who are looking to purchase eligible low-emissions vehicles. Green car loans tend to have lower interest rates than standard car loans as lenders incentivise borrowers to make sustainable choices. RateCity’s green car loan comparison table can help you get started on your search.

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This article was reviewed by Personal Finance Editor Alex Ritchie before it was published as part of RateCity's Fact Check process.

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