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Top 18 Electric Car Countries by Market Share [2021]

Top 18 Electric Car Countries by Market Share: 2021

the top 18 countries that use electric cars
Let’s go back 8-10 years, electric cars were a luxury item for most people. A time when one kilowatt hour would cost anywhere between $800 – $1,000 USD. Most countries had NO user friendly charging infrastructure. Fast-forward to 2021 and it’s a completely different story. You can now buy one kilowatt hour for a little over $100 USD. Modern first world cities continues to invest in better charging infrastructures.
 
The writing is on the wall, electric cars are the future.  In this long post, you’ll get an ordered list showing you which countries have the highest demand. Based on our research, I ordered the latest data of plug-in market share for new car sales for 18 different countries. 

*DATA below reflects year 2020 and 2019 (reference found at bottom).

18 Plug-In Friendly Countries by Market Share

chart showing ev market share 2019 and 2020

#18 United States 2.1% (2019*)

electric cars in usa
For a country with over 300 million people, the market share has become quite impressive. It seems like each year, more states have start to adopt stringent emission regulations. States like California, Oregon, Maryland, Colorado, Arizona, Washington State and District of Columbia.
 
One would think a country that gave birth to Tesla Motors would in the top 10. But, there’s still much progress to be made. Market share numbers are 2.10% as of 2019. States like California are doing 4x better than the entire US, with 8% market share. 

#17 Canada 3.0% (2019*)

Top 18 electric car countries
In 2017, Canada accounted for a total of 45,950 plug-in electric passenger cars. This consisted of 23,620 all-electric and 22,330 plug-in hybrid cars. As of 2017, the countries total market share reached 2.16%.
 
While the vast majority of the country remains a vast wilderness, along the border with the US is where all the action is. Cities such as Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Winnipeg, Edmonton and Vancouver are major hubs for EV’s. The stretches between them tends to be the issue for now.
 
In 2019, their total market share off all plug-in vehicles sold was 3.0%. 2020 is predicted to be more than 5% at this point.

#16 Belgium 3.2% (2019*)

electric cars in belgium

Belgium may be a small country, but i’ts home to over 11 million people. Unlike some of its neighboring countries which are adopting EV’s at a much higher rate, Belgium is slightly behind (for now). The government ended its incentives in 2012, resulting in absolutely no financial incentives to buy these electric cars.

Despite that, in 2016 there were 4,368 electric cars on the road. In 2017 the number increased to 6,552 and further to 9,244 in 2018. 

According to data collected, Belgium accounts for 2.50% of the market share.

In 2019, the market share has jumped by an additional 0.7% to 3.2%. While 2020 number are not in, like many other countries that saw an exponential growth between 2019 an 2020, Belgium could have already surpassed 10% in 2020. 

#15 China 5.4%

electric cars in china
China homes almost 1.5 billion people, the most in the world by country. If you ever watched the news, you’d see them slam China for having polluted air in cities like Beijing. The CCP has been pressing hard to change their countries image to being a “sustainable” nation.
 
According to expert figures, they are doing exactly that. China managed to reach a market share of 4.20%. It wouldn’t be surprising to see China take over many countries listed below in the next decade. In 2020, the number has jumped by 1.2% to 5.4%. 

#14 Switzerland 5.5% (2019*)

electric cars in switzerland
Switzerland… neutral, beautiful, has a high standards of living and is somewhat serious with electric cars. While it can’t stack up to countries like Iceland, Norway or Sweden, year after year growth has been steady.
 
As of April 2016, there has been over 12,000 electric vehicles registered. Market share figures are at 2.55% even though the Swiss government does not offer any financial incentives.
 
In some cantons (administrative division), you may qualify for annual tax relief.
2019 figures show the market share growth to 5.5%, more than double compared to 2016. 

#13 Ireland 7.4%

Ireland
The entire region of the UK and Ireland are steadily catching up to countries like France, Germany, and Portugal for having more plug-in vehicles sold compared to all other vehicles. Being a rather small country of 6.6 million people, they are doing considerably better than Belgium and Switzerland. Their 2020 figures went up by 3.3% market share to a total of 7.4%. 

#12 Austria 9.5%

electric cars in austria
Austria is much like Switzerland, beautiful in every way. Surrounded with majestic mountains, the country is blessed with a rich history. If you get a chance to visit, do so!
 
When it comes to EV adoption, plug-in vehicle sales went up by 22% in 2018. Recorded market share rose to 2.60% (compare to 2.1% in 2017). In 2020, the market rose further more to 9.5%. 

#11 United Kingdom 10.7%

electric cars in uk
Since early 2010, there has been a steady rise of EV ownership in the United Kingdom. By 2018, data records show 212,000 electric vehicles registered (10,000 of them being plug-in commercial vans).
 
In January of 2019, there were 19,108 public charging points at over 6,000 locations (4,391 of which are FAST chargers). This says a lot, considering the UK had one of the most drastic market share growths in the last 5-6 years. When records began in 2013, the market share was a tiny 0.16%. A year later in 2014, it grew to 0.59%. As of 2020, that number has 10x to 10.7%. 
 

#10 France 11.2%

electric cars in france

France is right behind Portugal when it comes to plug-in sales in 2020. France managed to have 11.2% of all vehicle sales to be plug-in vehicles. If you think thats small for a fairly populated country, maybe so. However, comparing the number to 2019 of 2.8%, that is a SIGNIFICANT jump. 

I have no doubt by the end of 2021, France will crack the 15% market share number. 

#9 Portugal 11.6%

electric cars in portugal
Similar to Norway, Portugal has been very ambitions to get its country on-track to becoming EV friendly. In 2009, Portugal worked with Renault and Nissan to create a nationwide charging network. One year later, they started offering financial incentives for the first 5,000 electric vehicles purchased
 
In 2014, the estimated number of vehicles sold were a measly 283. By 2015, there were a total of 1,305 electric vehicles sold. In 2020, Portugal ha a total of 29,700 plug-in vehicles sold (15,980 full electric and 13,720 plug-in hybrid). 

#8 Germany 13.5%

Electric Cars in Germany
Germany is a big player in the world of EVs. They specialize in luxury vehicles like the Audi e-tron, BMW i3, Volkswagen ID-3, ID-4 BMW i8, and Mercedes EQC.
Germany has embraced electric cars quite well. In 2017, the market share for electric vehicles rose to 1.58%. 
 
By 2018, their market share grew by an extra 0.32% to 1.90%. Latest figures say Germany has reached 13.5% market share, a whopping 11.6% increase since 2018.

#7 Hong Kong 14.0%

Hong Kong
Hong Kong is the smallest country on the list, but like China, they have managed to work very hard at making their infrastructure EV friendly. With population just over 7.5 million, that is 500,000 more than a country like Bulgaria has (who is also 10x bigger). 
 
Hong Kong has an impressive market share of EV’s at a whopping 14%. From 2019, it’s a jump of 9%. 

#6 Denmark 16.4%

electric cars in denmark
Denmark is ranked as one of the happiest places to live. When it comes to electric cars, they are doing quite well. As of 2018, Denmark has a total market share of 2.00%. This number has jumped UP by 6x by 2020 to 16.4%. 
 
Denmark has done well with its charging infrastructure. While it may be a small country, you can get around to almost anywhere with little to no incovenience. 

#5 Finland 18.1%

electric cars in finland
It looks like Finland has high hopes for an electrified future by 2030. The Finish government has set aim to have 250,000 plug-in cars and 50,000 biogas cars.
 
In October of 2016, there was a recorded 2,250 EV’s registered. Sales also reached 854 electric vehicles in the first three quarters of 2016. You may be thinking that’s not that many sales based on the size of the country… but actually, it’s quite good.
 
As of December 2020, the market share has jumped UP to 18.1%, that’s over 10x compared to 2016 numbers.

#4 Netherlands 24.6%

electric cars in netherlands
 
The country had a very strong market share in 2015 with 9.9%. It fell to 6.7% in 2016, 2.6% in 2017 and last year in 2018, it jumped back by almost 3X to 6.5%.
 
In December 2020, there was 297,380 EV’s and PHEV’s registered in the country. That number accounts for 182,481 plug-in hybrids, 108,652 electric utility vans, and 6,257 electric light-duty cars.
 
Future numbers are looking bright, with the number likely to surpass 30% by the end of 2021.

#3 Sweden 32.2%

electric cars in sweden
Being right next door to the #1 most EV friendly country in the world has its perks. Sweden made it to the #3 spot with a market share of 32.2 (as of 2020)%. As of December 2020, there was 217,704 plug-in vehicles registered. 
 
That number consists of 148,889 plug-in hybrids, 62,870 pure electrics, and 5,945 electric utility vans.

#2 Iceland 55.0%

electric cars in iceland

Who would-of thought Iceland would be NUMBER TWO on this list?

This island country has a very an impressive 55.00% market share (as of March 2020). For a country with less than a 400K people, they are treating electric and plug-in hybrid cars exceptionally well. Per capita in 2017, the country had 2,990 plug-in vehicles registered, up 157% from previous year. 

If you’re wondering how the country can have such a high jump in plug-in vehicle registrations, its because of the government.

Tax incentives and HUGE savings (compared to buying gas and diesel cars) is what’s leading people towards the EV route. 

#1 Norway 74.7%

electric cars in norway
You guessed it, Norway is leading the pack when it comes to market share. The government wants to transition to 100% EV’s by 2025. No matter where you look, Norway is painted as a haven for EV ownership (for good reason). Norway gets the biggest priority for different type of electric vehicles.
 
As of 2020, Norway has a market share of 74.7%. That’s an improvement by almost 20% from year prior.
 
As the government heavily taxes fossil fuels, more people will be switching to EV’s. The 2025 projection, seems quite achievable at this pace!

MOST Improved and LEAST Improved Countries

From the entire list of countries listed above, the country that improve the MOST from 2019 to 2020 was Iceland at +22.4%. A close second was Sweden at +20.8%, and number three was Norway at 18.8%.

The least-improved countries seemed to be China at a small +0.5%. While the numbers look small, the country of China still has the largest stock of plug-in passenger vehicles in the world at over 4.5 million.