Plug-in hybrid, fuel cell & battery electric vehicle sales: U.S. 2015-18

Sales of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV), fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV), and battery electric vehicles (BEV) have all increased in the United States since 2016. Sales of BEVs were particularly strong in 2018, more than doubling the amount sold in the previous year.

Tesla accelerate production

The increased production level of all-electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla is one reason why BEV sales were so strong in 2018. The American automotive firm recruited new employees ahead of what was to be its biggest year to date, and the company successfully increased the number of vehicles produced in each quarter of 2018. Tesla ended the year as the leading BEV brand in the United States by a considerable margin.

How do fuel cell electric vehicles work?

An FCEV creates its own electric energy through a combination of hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen is stored in a tank within the vehicle and can be replenished at a station – similar to how a vehicle with an internal combustion engine is refueled with gasoline. Hydrogen reacts with oxygen in the fuel cell to generate electricity, which is then used to power the electric motor. Sales of FCEVs in the United States have increased since 2015, but figures are well below those of PHEVs and BEVs.

U.S. sales of electric vehicles from 2015 to 2018, by propulsion type

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United States

Survey time period

2015 to 2018

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