A report from The Alliance for Automotive Innovation indicates that battery-electric vehicles accounted for 9.7% of new Delaware light-duty vehicles sales 2023’s third quarter. The figures came from the Get Connected Electric Vehicle Report.
The quarterly report also pointed to a lack of charging stations in Delaware and nationwide.
Delaware’s EV sales were in line with the 10.1% light-duty vehicle sales figures nationwide, up from 9.1% in the second quarter and 7.1% in the third quarter a year earlier. In the First State, the market share for new EV sales was up from 9.3% in the second quarter and and 6.3% in the third quarter of 2022.
Nationally, there have been about four million EVs built and a total of 151,303 publicly available charging outlets in the U.S. – a ratio of 26 EVs for every public port. This includes 34,611 stations which charge battery electric vehicles in 20 minutes to one hour.
According to the report, 10,039 EVs are on Delaware roads, with about 437 publicly available charging outlets – a ratio of 23 EVs for every public port. This includes 171 DC Fast chargers. Delaware ranks 31st in the ratio of EVs to public chargers.
According to the alliance, 414 chargers will need to be installed every day, for the next 7.2 years – or nearly 3 chargers every 10 minutes – through the end of 2030 to meet projected demand.
Concerns about charging options and the range of batteries are believed to be factors holding holding down EV sales.
The report’s the Alliance for alliance’s members include manufacturers producing most vehicles sold in the U.S., autonomous vehicle innovators to equipment suppliers, battery producers and semiconductor makers.
The figures run counter to the narrative that EV sales are stalled. The auto industry has made adjustments to production, one example being lower production of the Ford F-150 Lightning EV pickup. Sales are up more than 50% but remain below previous estimates.
The price of the Lightning starts at $54,000 with federal and state incentives reducing that figure. Ford had originally announced that the price of the pickup would start at aroound $40,000. However, supply chain issues, inflation and a new union contract with the United Auto Workers have put upward pressure on prices.
At the same time, the report indicated that the gap between the average new gas and electric vehicle has dropped to about $4,000, with the average price of EVs dropping by more than $12,000. Some of this has been driven by Tesla, which has dropped monthly lease rates below $350 for its entry level EV.
Dealers have reported that EVS with limited battery range and higher prices remain on the lot for a long period. However, some high-end EVs with longer ranges sell quickly, but are in limited supply, dealers reported.
Signs also point to slower growth until more lower priced EVs with longer battery ranges enter the marketplace. General Motors reported production delays for lower-priced EVs it planned to have in showrooms this year.
EVs have also become a campagin issue in state and national elections over mandates calling for a converstion to battery-electrics and plug-in hybrids by 2035. Republican legislators are also calling for an end to mandates, including one in Delaware that would require the vast majority of light vehicle sales to be either EVs or plug-ins.
Critics have also claimed that EVs will strain the electric grid and result in environmental damage from mining for minerals used in batteries.