LA Will Lead in Electric Vehicle Sales?

UCLA’s Luskin Center for Innovation has a nice report out that is getting some press: LA is expected to be a leader in electric vehicle sales.

Here’s a quote from the KCET story:


What does that mean in actual numbers? In 2015, a 9% market share of new car sales is estimated to be 30,000, with a total of some 230,000 purchased through 2020. Those numbers sharply contrast sales this year. “The analysis predicts just over 2,000 electric vehicles will be sold in Los Angeles in 2011,” explained Luskin Center director J.R. DeShazo. “This number is due to the limited supply of electric vehicles; even if more residents are inclined to purchase them, it just isn’t possible right now.”

I’m sure the Luskin folks are right about LA being an early adoption area, but the long-term trends for energy costs in California are not cheap for any energy supply, electricity included. I wish I knew more about the grid in California, but I wonder how the infrastructure is really going to manage all the charging, even if it is happening off-peak. But I may be completely wrong here–I need to learn more about the basics of energy production in the state.

As one of my brilliant PhD students says, with an EV you are polluting residents of nearby states. Of course, you’re doing the same with your ICE vehicle (emissions can transport across large geographies).

It will be interesting to see how all this plays out.

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