IEA's Global EV Outlook 2024: Another Year of EV Expansion

Share this article:

IEA Released Its Highly Anticipated Report, The Global EV Outlook 2024  

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has recently unveiled its flagship Global EV Outlook report for 2024, presenting the latest market insights based on market data from 2023. As with previous editions, this comprehensive report explores pivotal aspects of the electric vehicle (EV) landscape, offering detailed analyses of key areas such as EV deployment, charging infrastructure, battery demand, investment trends, and related policy developments across major and emerging markets. 

In addition to these core areas, the 2024 edition of the Global EV Outlook introduces new analyses to provide a deeper understanding of the EV market dynamics. This includes an examination of EV affordability, insights into second-hand markets, an assessment of lifecycle emissions associated with electric cars and their batteries, and an evaluation of the grid impacts stemming from charging medium- and heavy-duty electric trucks. 

Another point to mention is that the report now provides projections up to 2035, building upon the previous year's report, which only had projections until 2030. This year's report also provides market numbers for fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), a category previously absent in earlier editions, significantly broadening the scope of the report's coverage. 

Electric Vehicle Sales in 2023 

The global electric vehicle (EV) market continued its rapid expansion last year, with electric car sales nearing 14 million units, marking a 35% increase from the previous year. This surge in sales brought the total number of electric cars on the road to 40 million, closely following the forecasts from the 2023 edition of the Global EV Outlook. Notably, battery electric vehicles (BEVs) constituted 70% of the total electric car stock. 

Chart Global Sales of Electric Cars (Units) (2010-2023)Source: Statzon/ IEA

Chart Global Stock of Electric Cars (Units) (2010-2023)
Source: Statzon/ IEA

Sales were significantly concentrated in a few key markets. China, Europe, and the United States accounted for nearly 95% of global electric car sales, with respective shares of just under 60%, 25%, and 10%. In China, one in three new car registrations was electric, reflecting a 35% increase in registrations up to 8.1 million, despite the phase-out of national EV purchase subsidies. The US also saw significant growth, with a milestone of 1 million BEV sales and a total of 1.4 million new registrations, a 40% increase from 2022. Sales were encouraged by the revision of the Clean Vehicle Tax Credit and price reductions, leading to a notable 50% sales increase for models like the Tesla Model Y. 

Europe's growth was more modest but still substantial, with nearly 3.2 million new registrations marking an almost 20% increase. However, the phase-out of purchase subsidies in Germany led to a slowdown, particularly in December, which saw a significant downturn—the first since early 2020—culminating in a reduction of Germany's electric car sales share from 30% in 2022 to 25% in 2023. 

Despite these impressive figures, electric vehicle sales remained limited in other regions. However, the 2024 Global EV Outlook expanded its data explorer to include new countries, enhancing the global understanding of EV adoption. These countries include Bulgaria, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Latvia, Luxembourg, Romania, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, and the United Arab Emirates.

Free EV market data

EV Sales in Emerging Markets 

In 2023, electric car sales in emerging markets and developing economies (EMDEs) outside of China saw a continued rise. However, these sales remain low when compared to the global landscape. In many of these regions, personal cars are not the predominant mode of passenger transport. Instead, shared vans, minibusses, and two- and three-wheelers (2/3Ws) are more common, with the latter being more frequently electrified due to their affordability and accessibility. 

India witnessed a significant surge in electric car registrations, climbing 70% year-on-year to 80,000 units. This growth is particularly impressive given the overall car market's growth rate of under 10%. Electric vehicles accounted for approximately 2% of all cars sold in the country, indicating a gradual but steady shift towards electric mobility. 

Thailand's electric car market saw a remarkable increase, with registrations more than quadrupling year-on-year to nearly 90,000 vehicles. This brought the sales share of electric cars to an impressive 10%, a figure comparable to that of the United States. Chinese manufacturers dominate this market, with companies like BYD planning to expand further by establishing EV production facilities in Thailand in 2024. 

As for Vietnam, despite a 25% contraction in the overall car market in 2023, electric car sales in Vietnam experienced unprecedented growth. Registrations soared from under 100 in 2021 to 7,000 in 2022, and over 30,000 in 2023, achieving a 15% sales share. The domestic manufacturer VinFast, founded in 2017, played a pivotal role, accounting for nearly all domestic EV sales and beginning exports of electric SUVs to North America. 

In Malaysia, electric car registrations more than tripled in 2023, reaching 10,000 units, thanks to supportive policies such as tax breaks and import duty exemptions, coupled with accelerated development of charging infrastructure. 

Brazil saw its electric car registrations nearly triple year-on-year to over 50,000, achieving a market share of 3%. The growth was largely driven by the entry of Chinese carmakers, including BYD with its Song and Dolphin models, Great Wall with its H6, and Chery with its Tiggo 8. 

In Mexico, electric car registrations increased by 80% year-on-year, totaling 15,000 units, corresponding to a market share of just above 1%. 

Other Latin American countries like Colombia and Costa Rica also witnessed rising electric car sales, with around 6,000 and 5,000 units sold in 2023, respectively. However, electric vehicle sales remain limited in other Central and South American countries. 

Electric cars remain a rarity in Africa, Eurasia, and the Middle East, making up less than 1% of total car sales. Nevertheless, the emerging markets are set to be a fascinating area to watch in the coming year 

Preference Toward Bigger Electric Car Models 

In 2023, nearly 600 electric car models were available, with two-thirds being SUVs and large vehicles, a 15% increase from the previous year. Conversely, fully internal combustion engine (ICE) models declined by 2% annually for the fourth year. By 2028, electric models could reach 1,000, potentially matching ICE models by 2030. 

Most new electric models are larger vehicles. SUVs, pick-ups, and large cars dominated, reflecting broader market trends. SUVs alone make up 65% of global ICE car sales. Factors include lenient emissions rules in the U.S., CO2 allowances in the EU, and higher profit margins on larger vehicles. 

Despite some launches of smaller electric models, the focus remains on larger vehicles. Only 25% of the 400 new models expected by 2028 are small to medium-sized, a decrease from 2023, even in markets like China. 

Free EV market data

Sales of Electric Light Commercial Vehicles (e-LCVs) in 2023

The global sales for electric light commercial vehicles (e-LCVs) increasing by over 50% and the sales share nearing 5%. This trend was driven by substantial increases in key markets like China and Europe. In China, electric LCV sales surpassed 240,000, while in Europe, sales jumped 60%, reaching nearly 150,000. 

Chart Global Sales of Electric Vans by Type (Units) (2010-2023)Source: Statzon/ IEA

The range of electric LCVs has improved significantly, with a 55% increase from 2015 to 2023. Popular models like the Hyundai Porter and Ford E-Transit now offer ranges between 210 and 260 km, compared to around 170 km for older models like the Nissan e-NV200 and Renault Kangoo BEV. Despite these advancements, companies are calling for more accurate range labeling. 

Korea stands out with a faster penetration of electric LCVs compared to electric passenger cars. The Hyundai Porter and Kia Bongo, both locally produced, dominate the market, catering well to the shorter distances typical of Korean light freight. These models are also competitively priced, with the Kia Bongo 3 EV selling for around USD 25,000, including a subsidy of USD 7,700. 

Free electric LCV market data

Growth in Electric Bus Sales 2023

Electric bus sales continue to lead the heavy-duty vehicle sector, with nearly 50,000 sold globally in 2023, representing 3% of total bus sales and bringing the global electric bus stock to around 635,000. Several European countries, including Belgium, Norway, and Switzerland, along with China, achieved sales shares above 50%. However, sales numbers are actually lower than in previous years when electric bus sales reached 60,000 units. In fact, electric bus sales were highest between 2016-2018, when sales reached 80,000 units. 

Chart Global Electric Bus Sales (Units) (2010-2023)Source: Statzon/ IEA

China remains a dominant player, contributing to 60% of global electric bus sales, despite a drop from 90% in 2020 due to decreased domestic demand and subsidy cuts. However, Chinese manufacturers like Yutong and BYD have significantly increased their market share in the European Union and continue to export extensively to Latin America. 

City buses show strong electrification potential, with battery electric vehicles making up 43% of city bus sales in the European Union in 2023, pushing towards the goal of 100% zero-emission city bus sales by 2035. 

Free electric bus market data

Electric Truck Sales Gaining Momentum

Electric truck sales saw a significant increase of 35% in 2023, surpassing electric bus sales for the first time with around 54,000 units sold. China dominated the market, accounting for 70% of global sales, though down from 85% in 2022. Europe’s electric truck sales nearly tripled to over 10,000, achieving a 1.6% market share, while the United States saw a threefold increase, reaching 1,200 units, representing less than 0.1% of total truck sales. 

Chart Global Sales of Electric Trucks by Type (Units) (2010-2023)

The growth is driven by robust policies, such as the European Union’s CO2 standards targeting a 90% reduction by 2040 and the U.S. heavy-duty emissions regulation aiming for up to 60% ZEV sales by 2032. Cities like London and Los Angeles are implementing zero-emission freight zones, further boosting adoption. Initiatives like the EV100+ and the Global MOU on Zero-Emission HDVs continue to advocate for ambitious policies and accelerated sales targets. 

Free electric truck market data

Source: Statzon, IEA Global EV Outlook 2024, IEA Global Sales of Electric Cars (2010-2023), IEA Global Stock of Electric Cars (2010-2023), IEA Global Sales of Electric Vans (2010-2023), IEA Global Sales of Electric Bus (2010-2023), IEA Global Sales of Electric Trucks (2010-2023)

Share this article:

Recommended articles for you: