California made up a third of all U.S. BEV sales in 2023

Credit: Tesla

California battery-electric vehicle (BEV) sales made up more than a third of all BEV sales in the U.S. last year, ahead of the state’s sales ban on new gas cars set for 2035.

BEV registrations in California made up 33.8 percent of BEV sales across the U.S. in 2023, as detailed in a recent report from the California New Car Dealers Association (CNCDA) citing Experian data. U.S. market share of BEVs ended the year at 7.5 percent, while BEV market share reached 21.4 percent in California.

The report also showed that internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles made up around 63.9 percent of new vehicle sales in the state, dropping off by about 7.7 percent from the prior year.

Toyota and Tesla were the top-selling auto brands in California, earning the top overall market share figures regardless of powertrain at 15.7 percent and 13 percent, respectively. Behind them, Honda, Ford and Chevrolet made up the remainder of the top five selling brands in the state, with Tesla being the only BEV-only manufacturer in the top 15.

See the top 15 selling brands in California, regardless of powertrain, below.

Credit: CNCDA (from Experian data)

The report’s Vehicle Powertrain Dashboard also detailed the top registered BEVs and plugin hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) in the state.

As a whole, the BEV sector in California saw an impressive 46.1 percent increase from 2022, with a total of 380,891 total BEVs registered. Tesla remained the dominant BEV segment leader in California with 230,588 registrations, marking a 24.6 percent increase year over year along with a BEV market share of 60.5 percent.

In addition, Tesla’s Model Y and Model 3 took the top two spots on the list of the top-selling BEVs and PHEVs, with the Chevy Bolt BEV, Jeep Wrangler PHEV, and Volkswagen ID.4 BEV taking the third, fourth, and fifth spots, respectively. You can see the top 15 selling BEVs and PHEVs in California below.

Credit: CNCDA (from Experian data)

You can view the full California Auto Outlook from the CNCDA here.

Although U.S. adoption of BEVs trails quite far behind California, a report in September seemed to indicate that the U.S. pace of adoption will follow the state’s trend in the coming years. Still, much of the industry has aired concerns about slowed BEV demand in recent months, especially as many consumers await lower-priced models in 2025 and beyond.

The increase of BEV sales also comes as California and other states have enacted a sales ban on new gas cars starting in 2035, with the state aiming to reach 35 percent BEV market share by 2026 and 68 percent by 2030.

California’s proposed 2035 EV sales mandate faces scrutiny at EPA hearing

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California made up a third of all U.S. BEV sales in 2023
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