IEA: Nearly one in five cars sold in 2023 to be electric

Close up shot of shiny red Tesla EV in garage (polestar)
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Nearly one in five cars sold globally this year will be electric, with the prices of smaller EV models dropping to rival those of combustion engine cars in North America and Europe by the mid-2020s, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).

Reuters reports the agency raised its EV sales forecasts in part because of the US Inflation Reduction Act, which supports green industry and subsidises EV purchases.

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China features prominently, making up half the EVs on the road worldwide including battery-electric cars and plug-in hybrids, and with 60% of EV sales last year taking place there, according to the IEA’s annual outlook on EVs.

The country has also seen prices for some smaller EV models edging lower towards those of their combustion engine equivalents, according to IEA energy technology policy head Timar Guell.

Electric car sales globally are expected to surge 35% this year to 14 million, the report said, comprising 18% of the passenger car market, up from just 4% in 2020.

“Our current expectation is that we can see price parity in small and medium-sized electric cars in North America and European markets somewhere in the mid-2020s… for larger cars like SUVs and pick-ups, purchasing parity is likely to come later, probably into the 2030s,” Guell said.

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SUVs and large cars account for nearly two-thirds of EVs in China and Europe and a greater proportion in the United States.

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