Ah, Norway. Bitterly cold, hundreds of fjords, and runaway electric car leaders.
Recent sales figures out of the Scandinavian country all point towards one thing: EVs are surging in at a record pace, and combustion vehicles are rapidly declining towards non-existence.
A record 84 per cent of all cars purchased in January were fully electric. And of the top 20 best sellers of the month, only one didn’t run off battery juice. That award goes to the Toyota RAV4, and it only just worked itself inside the top ten.
Audi’s Q4 e-tron topped the bestsellers list, fractionally ahead of the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and BMW iX.
Surprisingly, Tesla didn’t crack the top 20 list. The manufacturer had fluctuating delivery rates over the last 12 months, so it’s more likely a lack of actual cars is the primary reason behind the sudden slump.
As for Norway itself, the news doesn’t come as too much of a surprise. After all, we are talking about the first country in the world where EV sales exceeded combustion sales.
Norway’s government has been firm in their reward electric, punish gas ideology. Heavy gas-guzzlers are substantially more expensive than their electric counterparts due to the government’s pollution tax laws.
The idea isn’t new at all. Norway has been rewarding and incentivising the sale of electric vehicles with tax exemptions since the 1990s.
The Norwegian government has already declared its intentions to ban the sale of new non-electric vehicles by 2025. Another world first.
New Zealand will be someway behind, with imports of combustion cars mooted to end in 2035 before a proposed complete ban in 2050.
By then, Norway would have been a quarter of a century into their EV-only future.