Norway. Country with the highest standard of living in the world, including a government mandated 35 days of paid vacation a year. 100% literacy rate. Estimated 80 year life expectancy. Midnight sun and northern lights. Reindeer. Socialism. Abnormally attractive people. And they lead the world in electric vehicle usage PLUS a clean grid to back it up: 100% of their electricity comes from hydropower.
So what are we doing here in the land of the free? Too busy quibbling about small potatoes like racial profiling and abortion or something. In the US electric vehicles accounted for some 0.06% of car purchases in 2012, while in Norway that number was up to 3%. The most popular electric vehicles sold in Norway are the Nissan Leaf and the Mitsubishi i-MiEV.
Part of why the Norwegian electric vehicle population is flourishing is probably because of the terrific incentives for Norwegians. Purchases on electric vehicles there are exempt from purchase and 25% sales taxes, electric vehicles drivers are free from paying tolls and street parking, and electric vehicles are granted access to bus lanes. These incentives are confirmed until 2018, but who knows, they might keep them around if they are serious about their commitment to be carbon neutral by 2050.
It’s not all perfect though. Several articles have pointed out that EVs simply cost more in Norway and that all those sweet incentives are very costly to provide (somewhere around 8,200 per vehicle), meaning they won’t be around forever.
Also, poop in Oslo.