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Top 20 Plugin Electric Vehicles In The World — September 2021

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Global plugin vehicle registrations were up 98% in September 2021 compared to September 2020, scoring a record 685,000 units (or 10.2% share of the overall auto market, the first time the global market share reached two digits). That’s a significant 16% increase over the previous record, set in June, and expect the two final months of the year to also become record months.
Fully electric vehicles (BEVs) represented 75% of plugin registrations in September, above the year-to-date tally (68%). In total, there were some 512,000 registrations of BEVs, or 7.6% share of the overall auto market.
With the YTD tally now above 4.3 million units (and at a record 7% share), and knowing that the last months of the year are traditionally strong sellers, we should be seeing the plugin vehicle (PEV) market easily surpass 6 million units this year, with the 7 million unit mark being a true possibility!
For comparison sake, 2020 ended with 3.1 million units registered. Not bad, considering the current chip shortage, eh?
While disruption is already happening in Europe and China, we should only see consistent disruptive levels on a global scale next year, which will probably get a boost from the US market as it goes into warp speed due to new incentives and the start of the ramp-up of several electric pickup trucks.
Having said that, December could be the first month to break one million units globally, as all 3 major markets (China, Europe, and USA) are expected to have record months.
The future will depend much on the development of the COVID pandemic, the economic recovery, and the chip (and battery) shortage, but whatever happens, expect plugins to continue increasing market share. Many legacy OEMs are now prioritising their plugin offerings over their fossil fuel models, because they need to have a foot in the door in the fast-growing plugin market now in order to assure their survival in a future BEV-based automotive market.

In the model ranking, it was a peak month for Tesla, and it shows, with both the #1 Tesla Model 3 and #2 Tesla Model Y hitting record months. The first hit 70,798 registrations in September and the second reached 68,469 registrations, but looking at the quarterly performances of each midsize model, which is the right approach to measure Tesla’s performance, there are significant nuances between the two. While the Model Y continues to increase its monthly average per quarter (~38,000 units), the Model 3’s third quarter performance (39,000) was its lowest since last year’s Q3. So, at this point, one can say that the sedan is now entering into its maturity stage, and Tesla’s growth prospects for the near future are mainly on the Model Y, which should regularly surpass the Model 3 soon — especially when we consider that the crossover is only now landing in Europe.

Off the podium, the rising Volkswagen ID.4 (13,138 registrations, a new record) was beaten once again by the surging BYD Qin Plus PHEV, which scored a record 15,164 registrations. With the BEV version of the midsize Chinese model also ramping up (it was #8, with a record 8,396 registrations), both versions counted together got an amazing total of 23,560 registrations. One wonders where and when the delivery ramp-up will end. Will the BYD midsizer be the first to run head to head with the Model 3?
Elsewhere, a mention goes out to several Chinese models hitting record scores — there were 12 Chinese models in September’s top 20, 6 of them with record scores. Besides the aforementioned BYD Qin Plus PHEV and BYD Qin Plus BEV, the #6 BYD Song Pro PHEV, #12 GAC Aion S, #13 XPeng P7, and #20 Letin Mango all hit new records.
Interestingly, if we count both the BEV and PHEV versions of the BYD Song Pro together, we get 14,791 units, which is above the #5 Volkswagen ID.4. So, basically, the closest competitors to both Tesla midsizers are not coming from Volkswagen but from BYD, in the form of the Qin Plus (Model 3) and Song Pro (Model Y). But more on this later….
In the traditional OEM camp, the highlights were the aforementioned Volkswagen ID.4, and VW’s lower riding #7 ID.3, with the hatchback scoring its best result in 2021 — 8,397 registrations. The #17 Hyundai Ioniq 5 continued to shine, hitting a record 6,754 units last month, while its Kia cousin, the EV6, had 2,823 registrations in its second month on the market, which means the sporty Kia is ramping up faster than its Hyundai stablemate.
Will both Koreans reach 5-digit scores soon? I presume there wouldn’t be a problem from a demand point of view, but as far as supply….
Outside the top 20, we should mention that there are 6 Chinese models in the following 10 positions, and 4 of them hit record scores (NIO ES6, Great Wall Ora Good Cat, Hozon Neta V, GAC Aion Y). So, soon we might have the majority of the top 20 belonging to Chinese brands. But more on this later….


In the YTD table, the climber of the month was the BYD Qin Plus PHEV, which jumped 4 spots to #5, with the BYD midsizer now set to go after the #4 VW ID.4. But if we were to add the BEV version volumes to the BYD sedan, the Qin Plus would actually have 89,177 registrations, which would grant it the 4th spot.
But there were other models climbing in the ranking, all coming from Asia. The GAC Aion S climbed to #10, while the Kia Niro EV profited from the slow months of the Renault Zoe and Hyundai Kona EV to jump two spots, into #12.
We have a new face in the top 20, with the XPeng P7 joining the table in #19. It’s the 10th Chinese model in the top 20, while below the #20 Ford Kuga/Escape PHEV, we should mention the rising #22 BYD Song Pro PHEV, which is some 600 units below the top 20 and should join the table next month. That would make it 11(!) Chinese models in the YTD top 20. But more on this (and dinosaurs) later….

In September, Tesla hit a record score of 143,143 registrations, doubling the numbers of #2 BYD, which nevertheless is continuing to ramp up production. In fact, BYD once again beat its own record, with 70,236 registrations in September.
With the seemingly never-ending record streak from the Shenzhen automaker set to continue, numbers could start to get close to Tesla’s own quarterly average, set at 80,433 units/month last quarter.
#5 SAIC also set a record in September, much thanks to export markets (it had 6,500 registrations last month alone). That, added to the continuing strong performances from SGMW, made Shanghai Auto one of the winners of the month.

Hyundai and Kia impressed in September, both with record scores, with the Ioniq 5 and EV6 providing that little extra volume to what are already very consistent lineups, so we might have these two aiming for top 5 presences soon.
But the main trend is the rise and rise of the Chinese brands. Besides aforementioned BYD and SAIC, 4 other automakers had record months in September, with #12 GAC, #14 Dongfeng(!), #17 XPeng, and #19 NIO all hitting record scores. That means that out of the 9 Chinese brands in this top 20, 6(!) had record months. These 9 brands made 30% of all plugin vehicles registered last month….
And there are plenty more Chinese automakers (Li Xiang, Hozon, Letin, Weltmeister, Chery, etc.) ramping up faster than the market average, which raises the question:
From a legacy OEM point of view (say, Volkswagen’s), what is more dangerous, one T-rex or a pack of 20 velociraptors?
Sure, it is easier to focus on the T-rex and make your moves according to what that Big, Bad Beast is doing, but they have to keep a close eye also on the fast-running velociraptors. While in isolation one Velociraptor doesn’t seem that threatening, as a pack, they are far more effective in gobbling up market share than the T-rex, as they can disperse throughout the market/territory in a way the T-rex can’t. After all, one can’t imagine the Tesla-rex going into the tight spaces of city cars, for example, while a pack of 20 velociraptors (or more) can easily spread into smaller groups and go after several categories/herds at once.
And while most of these Velociraptors are still contained in their native Jurassic Park, there is an opening in the fence and soon many will follow the lead of the early pioneers (SAIC, BYD, XPeng, NIO) and spread havoc on the legacy OEM domains. Even the T-rex will have to look out!
Editor’s note: Nice metaphor.


In the YTD table, the main news was that a rising BYD has surpassed SGMW and is now the new silver medalist, while SAIC climbed to 6th at the expense of Mercedes.
There wasn’t much else to report. Although, it should be mentioned that rising #10 Kia and #11 Hyundai are now set to catch #9 Audi by the end of the year, while #14 Peugeot has shortened the distance to #13 Toyota, and #17 GAC should surpass #16 Ford next month.
Finally, Skoda managed to retain the 20th spot, but it shouldn’t for long, as #21 XPeng is just 500 units behind it. With the current production ramp-up of the Chinese startup, we should see it join the table in October.


Looking at registrations by OEM, Tesla gained market share last month thanks to its end-of-quarter peak, but it also lost a bit of share compared to last quarter (15.2% in Q2, 14.7% now). Further, YoY, it has dropped 3 percentage points below its market share in September 2020 (18% then, 15% now), which goes inline with the current trend of a soft landing of Tesla into a long term 10–12% market share interval — according to our expectations.
Meanwhile, Volkswagen Group is 2nd at 12%, 1 percentage point less than it had a year ago. Still, the German conglomerate is by far the most important legacy OEM in the plugin business, and maybe the only representative of the Old Guard in the future Big 3/4 OEMs of an EV-based automotive business.
SAIC kept its market share compared to last quarter, ending Q3 with the same 11% it had in Q2, but its 3rd spot still feels like a win. After all, a year ago, SAIC wasn’t even in the top 5.
BYD jumped two positions from Q2 to Q3, now showing up in #4, with 8% share, a full 3 point jump over the 5% it had just three months ago. I believe that by the end of the year, SAIC and Volkswagen Group will have to defend their positions from an ambitious BYD.
Stellantis kept its 5th spot with 6% share (former #4 BMW Group was kicked out of the top 5). It is a strong candidate to become one of the Old Guard OEMs in a future B-League of the automotive business, but for that to happen, its American arm (ahem, pickup trucks) needs to start moving sooner than later.


If we exclude PHEVs and focus solely on BEVs, Tesla’s share increases, naturally. It is sitting at 22% share, 1 point less than in the previous quarter. It has lost 4 percentage points YoY (it had 26% share a year ago).
SAIC is the runner-up, keeping its 14% share of Q2 but winning a full 6 percentage points of share compared to a year ago (“You’re welcome,” says the Wuling Mini EV). Meanwhile, #3 Volkswagen Group has kept its 3rd spot, with 10% share, despite losing 1 point compared to the second quarter of this year.
Off the podium, BYD is in the 4th position, with 6% share, while in 5th we have a position change, with Stellantis losing that position to Hyundai–Kia. The Korean OEM benefited from the Ioniq 5/EV6 push to jump from #7 in Q2 to the current #5 position. However, YoY, the Korean group lost 2 percentage points of market share, dropping from 7% to 5%.
But the big tumble compared to September 2020 belongs to the Renault–Nissan Alliance. A year ago, it was in 3rd place, with 9% share, while now it has less than half that share…. Oh, how the mighty have fallen!
So, in short, changing from PHEV+BEV to just BEV doesn’t significantly change the overall trends, but there are differences. #1 Tesla and #2 SAIC benefit in terms of market share, while Volkswagen Group drops from #2 to #3 (replaced by SAIC). Also, more PHEV-dependent Stellantis gets replaced in #5 by more BEV-friendly Hyundai–Kia.
Always interested in the auto industry, particularly in electric cars, Jose has been overviewed the sales evolution of plug-ins on the EV Sales blog, allowing him to gain an expert view on where EVs are right now and where they are headed in the future. The EV Sales blog has become a go-to source for people interested in electric car sales around the world. Extending that work and expertise, Jose is also market analyst on EV-Volumes and works with the European Alternative Fuels Observatory on EV sales matters.

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How to meet America’s climate goals: 5 policies for Biden’s next climate bill

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Kelly Sims Gallagher, Tufts University
President Joe Biden’s new climate strategy, announced after his original plan crumbled under opposition in Congress, will represent a historic investment in clean energy technology and infrastructure if it is enacted. But it is still not likely to be enough to meet the administration’s emissions reduction goals for 2030.
As director of the Fletcher School’s Climate Policy Lab at Tufts University, I analyze ways governments can manage climate change.
As the new plan comes together, and the administration considers future steps, here are five types of policies that can help get the United States on track to achieve its climate targets. Together they would reassure the world that the United States can honor its climate commitments; help stave off the effects of a carbon border tax planned in Europe; and, if designed right, position U.S. workers and firms for the low-carbon economy of the 21st century.
The United States’ ability to compete in low-carbon and resilience technologies such as energy storage has eroded over the past two decades.
Part of the problem has been the political impasse in Washington over clean energy and climate policies. Over the past 20 years, tax credits, loan guarantees and regulations have started and stopped, depending on the political whims of whoever is in power in Congress and the White House. U.S. companies have gone bankrupt while waiting for markets to materialize.
Meanwhile, European companies, with backing from their investment and development banks, and Chinese companies have surged ahead, using their home markets to demonstrate new technologies and build industries. Wind turbines are a good example. European companies, led by Denmark’s Vestas, controlled 43% of the wind turbine market globally in 2018, and China controlled 30%. By contrast, the United States accounted for only 10%.
I believe the United States as a country needs to make choices about where it has a comparative advantage, and then the federal government can chart a clear course forward to develop those industries and compete in those global markets. Will it be electric vehicles? Electricity storage? Technology for adaptation such as sea wall construction, flood control or wildfire management? Independent advice could be provided to the administration and Congress, perhaps by the National Academies of Science, and then Congress could authorize an investment plan to conditionally support these industries.
Tempting as it is to support all technologies, public dollars are scarce. Companies that receive subsidies must be held accountable with performance requirements, and taxpayers should get a return when those companies succeed.
As part of industrial policy, officials also need to squarely face up to the fact that some workers, states, cities and towns with industries closely tied to fossil fuels are vulnerable in the transition to cleaner energy.
On an expert panel convened by the National Academies of Science and recent study, colleagues and I recommended that the government establish a national transition corporation to provide support and opportunities for displaced workers and affected communities. These communities will need to diversify their economies and their tax bases. Regional planning grants, loans and other investments can help them pivot their economies to industries that contribute less to climate change. Establishing a U.S. infrastructure bank or green bank to fund low-emissions and resilience projects could help finance these investments.
Equally important is investing in the workforce needed for a low-carbon economy. The government can subsidize the development of programs at colleges and universities to serve this economy and provide scholarships for students.
Other policies can help generate the revenue needed to support the transition to a clean economy.
Obviously, removing subsidies for fossil fuel industries is a crucial step forward. One analysis estimated, conservatively, that the U.S. provides about US$20 billion a year in direct subsidies to the fossil fuel industries. Estimates of indirect subsidies are much higher.
Tax reform can also help, such as replacing some individual and corporate income taxes with a carbon tax. This policy tool would tax the carbon in fuels, creating an incentive for companies and consumers to reduce use of fuels with the greatest impact on the climate. To avoid overburdening low-income households, the government could reduce income taxes on lower-income households or provide a dividend check.
Tax credits, loan guarantees, government procurement rules and investments in innovation are all useful tools and can shape markets for American companies. But these fiscal policy tools should not be permanent, and they should be phased down as technology costs come down.
The government has the ability to both “push” and “pull” climate technologies into the marketplace. Government investments in research and human capital are “push”-type policies, because supporting research ensures that smart people will keep moving into the field.
The government can also “pull” in technologies by creating vibrant markets for them, which will provide further incentives to innovation and spur widespread deployment. Carbon taxes and emissions trading systems can create predictable markets for industry because they provide long-term market signals that let companies know what to expect for years ahead, and they at least partially account for a product’s damage to the environment.
While the United States is investing in clean-energy research, development and demonstration, it has been less successful than China or Europe – both of which have emissions trading systems – in developing predictable, durable markets.
A tried-and-true U.S. policy tool is the use of performance standards. These standards limit the amount of greenhouse gas emissions per unit, such as fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for motor vehicles, energy efficiency standards for appliances and industrial equipment, and building efficiency standards at the state level. Fuel economy standards on automobiles since 1975 have saved about 2 trillion gallons of gas and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by about 14 gigatons, roughly three times the country’s annual emissions from energy in 2020.
Performance standards give companies the flexibility to find the best way to comply, which can also fuel innovation. The Biden administration could develop new performance standards in each major emitting sector – vehicles, power plants and buildings. Federally imposed building codes, which are set at the state and local levels, would be a difficult political lift.
The laws that established the government’s authority to set standards, such as the Clean Air Act and Energy Policy Act, have some ambiguities that can leave standards vulnerable to court challenge, however. Legal challenges have led to a zigzag in regulations in some sectors, most obviously the power sector.
A final area where policy is needed is for nature-based solutions. These might be fiscal incentives for restoring forests, which store carbon, or protecting existing lands from development, or they might be regulations.
Laws and regulations at the state level can also be enormously powerful in changing the U.S. emissions trajectory.
The centerpiece of Biden’s original climate plan was a program designed to reward and pressure utilities to shift electricity production away from fossil fuels faster. With the Senate split evenly between Democrats and Republicans, West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin’s opposition sank the plan.
The Biden administration’s new Plan B has a number of heroic assumptions and relies heavily on fiscal and regulatory tools, along with lots of state-level actions.
Missing from Plan B is the emphasis on innovation and industrial policy, both of which might have a larger impact on U.S. emissions. The elephant in the room that cannot be ignored is that the United States needs a climate bill that puts its targets for reducing emissions by 2030 and 2050 into law, gives the right government agencies the authority to set policies and addresses industrial and workforce needs.
Kelly Sims Gallagher, Professor of Energy and Environmental Policy and Director, Center for International Environment and Resource Policy at The Fletcher School, Tufts University
This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.
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Initiative to create ‘world’s first’ transnational solar grid network formed at COP26

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At the United Nations COP26 climate summit that began this week, 80 countries endorsed plans for the world’s first transnational solar power network, led by the UK and India.
The Green Grids Initiative seeks to connect 140 countries to clean, renewable energy and reduce dependence on coal. As part of the initiative, the International Solar Alliance aims to mobilize $1 trillion in financing by 2030 to assist developing countries in expanding their solar power grids.
“What we want… is to take these inventions, these breakthroughs, and get them the finance and the support they need to make sure that they are disseminated through the whole world,” UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said.
U.S. President Joe Biden expressed support for the initiative in his speech at the launch of COP26.
“We have to scale up clean technologies that are already commercially available and cost competitive like wind and solar energy,” Biden said.
International financing for clean energy and climate change resiliency will be a focus of COP26. Developed countries committed in 2009 to provide $100 billion annually in climate finance to developing countries by 2020.
report released in September by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development found that developed countries mobilized $79.6 billion in 2019. Research from the World Resources Institute determined that most developed countries are not contributing their fair share toward meeting the $100 billion goals.
“Three major economies — the United States, Australia, and Canada — provided less than half their share of the financial effort in 2018, based on objective indicators such as the size of their economies and their greenhouse gas emissions,” WRI authors wrote. “Other nations that provided less than half of their fair share were Greece, Iceland, New Zealand, and Portugal. In total, more than a dozen developed countries were falling short of their responsibilities.”
Biden is working to secure enhanced emissions reduction targets from world leaders at COP 26, while his signature domestic climate change agenda remains in the balance in Congress.
On Tuesday, Biden unveiled plans to target methane emissions with a rule from the Environmental Protection Agency. The president announced in September that the U.S. would join the European Union in signing the Global Methane Pledge to reduce the world’s methane emissions by 30% below 2020 levels by 2030. More than 100 countries have now joined the pledge.
“The EPA is today proposing new regulations that will significantly broaden and strengthen methane emissions reduction for new oil and gas facilities. In addition, for the first time ever, it will require that states develop plans that will reduce methane emissions from existing sources nationwide—including from an estimated 300,000 oil and gas well sites,” the White House said in a statement. “Overall, the proposed requirements would reduce emissions from covered sources, equipment, and operations by approximately 75%.”

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Microsoft to power Virginia data centers with 24/7 clean energy

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Microsoft will power its data centers in Virginia with 24/7 clean energy through a 15-year agreement with AES Corporation.
The partnership supports Microsoft’s goal of matching 100% of its electricity consumption with zero carbon energy purchases by 2030.
“By leveraging AES’ capability and presence in the PJM market, we are able to both secure additional renewable supply in support of meeting our commitment to use 100% renewable energy by 2025, and also take a meaningful step toward having 100% of our electricity matched by zero-carbon resources all of the time in the region,” said Brian Janous, General Manager Energy & Renewables at Microsoft. “We believe innovative commercial structures like this with AES and integrating new technologies will be key as we continue to move toward our 100/100/0 commitment.”  
AES will source the energy from a portfolio of 576 MW of contracted renewable assets, including wind, solar, as well as battery energy storage projects in PJM.
“Microsoft is a leader in the energy transition with its commitment to being 100% powered by zero-carbon electricity by 2030. We’re proud of the solution we co-created with Microsoft to help meet that commitment with the delivery of 24/7 zero-carbon electricity to its Virginia-based data centers,” said Andrés Gluski, AES President and CEO. “Working together with leading corporations, we are setting new standards for decarbonizing their operations and the grid.”

By matching energy consumption with clean energy produced elsewhere on the grid, power purchase agreements have allowed corporations to take action to address the current and future risks posed by climate change.
But, in some cases, there’s an opportunity to go beyond the PPA, and more effectively decarbonize the grid through hourly load matching, or 24/7 matching, according to an analysis by RMI. RMI defines hourly load matching as “where a buyer attempts to procure sufficient carbon-free energy to match a given facility’s load in every hour.”
The findings of the “Clean Power by the Hour” determined: costs increased with the level of hourly load matching compared to costs for meeting annual procurement targets, near-term emissions reductions for hourly load matching depend on the regional grid mix, and hourly procurement strategies can create new markets for emerging technologies.
“Overall, we find that hourly load-matching strategies can help lay the groundwork for a decarbonized grid in the long term but should be carefully tailored to region-specific grid dynamics to also maximize emissions reductions in the near term,” RMI authors wrote in the report. “Buyers who have not yet offset 100% of their annual electricity use with procured (carbon-free energy) can feel confident that doing so based on annual targets in regions with low renewable energy adoption will continue to create material climate benefits. This can be done even as buyers who have already met that goal continue to push the envelope of sophistication and pave the way toward a 100% CFE grid.”
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