This new product, the electric vehicle, is still in its infancy and data that has been made available by automakers are still scarce. While large automakers such as GM and Nissan have readily provided sales information, smaller electric car manufacturers such as Tesla, Smart, Wheego and GEM have not provided information to complete the sales picture for this revolutionary vehicle.
The top sellers of electric vehicles are the Chevy Volt and the Nissan Leaf. The design of the Volt is still basically hybrid in nature, as there is an internal combustion engine in the unit, connected to the drive train that extends the range of the vehicle. On the other hand, the Nissan Leaf is a fully automated electric vehicle powered solely by lithium ion batteries.
In June 2011, there have been 1,708 Nissan Leaf units have been sold. For May 2011, Nissan was able to sell 1,142 units. As for the Chevy Volt, there were 561 units sold in June 2011 while in May, there were 480 units sold. These numbers were the units sold over a two-month period in the United States. In total, over 3,894 units of Nissan Leaf have been sold since it was made available to the US market in December 2010.
Across the pond, UK electric car sales have been dominated by the Nissan Leaf. Once made available to the UK market in March 2011, an average of one hundred units have been sold per month totaling 338 individual units until June 2011. The smaller numbers is not due to the non-acceptance of Europeans of the new car design but rather attributed to the lack of supply available of the cars in the UK market.
These numbers are just the tip of the iceberg and is a precursor to a much larger demand in the future. The waiting list for electric cars now number in five hundred in the UK alone and the numbers are rising. While the numbers for electric cars seem to be a trickle compared to the thousands of internal combustion engines being bought off showrooms in both the U.S. and the UK, this is a good sign that the market for electric cars and hybrids is healthy and kicking.
Soon enough, the numbers would change.