Nov 30, 2023 - Energy & Environment

The country's electric car hotspots, mapped

EV miles traveled per 1,000 residents
Data: Replica; Map: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

Much of the country's electric vehicle (EV) use is concentrated in the "four corners" of California, the Pacific Northwest, the Northeast and the Southeast, according to data shared with Axios.

  • Two glaring exceptions? Colorado and Hawai'i.

How it works: The data, from mobility analytics platform Replica, is based on estimated EV miles traveled per 1,000 residents at the county level on a typical weekday in the second quarter of 2023.

  • Replica's data comes from anonymized mobile device info, roadside sensors, transit agencies and more.

Zoom in: Marin County, Calif., takes the crown for the most electric miles traveled per 1,000 residents among large counties, at 1,942 on a typical weekday.

  • Santa Clara County, Calif. (1,607) and San Mateo County, Calif. (1,386) follow.

Between the lines: The areas with the most EV activity are generally those with better-developed charging infrastructure, as well as higher-income households that can more easily afford the electric car premium.

The big picture: Electric car sales are booming, but remain short of automakers' hopes and dreams as some potential buyers continue to be skeptical about their range, performance and cost.

  • Several major automakers, including Ford, General Motors and others, are recalibrating their electric car ambitions after lower-than-expected sales.
  • Car dealers, meanwhile, are kvetching about unsold EVs piling up on their lots, as Axios' Joann Muller reports.

Yes, but: Used EV prices are dropping fast.

  • That's bad news for early adopters who hoped to skirt the law of depreciation, but a win for those looking to go electric on a tighter budget.

Plus: Automakers are doubling down on their investments in charging infrastructure to help solve the range anxiety issue.

  • Mercedes, for instance, is rolling out swanky "charging lounges," while the car maker and several others are also partnering on a separate new charging network.

The bottom line: The story this map ultimately tells? The electric car revolution is happening — it's just unevenly distributed.

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