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US retail EV market share reaches record 3.1% in March: IHS Markit

18 May 2021 IHS Markit Automotive Expert

US new retail light vehicle registrations reached a 10-year high of 1.64 million in March 2021, and, were highlighted by electric vehicle (EV) retail market share reaching a record 3.1%, according to an analysis by IHS Markit, released on 18 May.

From a regional perspective, March 2021 new vehicle registrations in the Northeast climbed the most when compared with March 2020, more than doubling to lead all regions with just over 336,000 units, due partially to an abnormally low base from COVID-19 impacts last year. When comparing March 2021 with March 2019 to eliminate the impact of the pandemic, the Southwest outperformed all others, up 16% to more than 264,000 registrations.

New EV retail registrations more than doubled year on year in March to 42,591, with eight of the 10 most popular EVs displaying triple-digit growth compared with March 2020 (one of the remaining two was not on the market a year ago).

EV retail registrations rising from the 1-2% range to a record 3.1% is significant as it signifies the EV category is moving from a niche status in the direction of the mainstream, IHS Markit noted.

"The 10-year industry registration record in March is indeed remarkable as it exceeds any monthly result during the four-year stretch from 2015 through 2018 when industry registrations surpassed 17 million every year, the highest volume four-year stretch in history," said Tom Libby, associate director, automotive loyalty and industry analysis, IHS Markit.

US GDP is expected to expand by 6.7% this year, according to IHS Markit forecasts, as more Americans are vaccinated and the economy re-opens.

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