New electric vehicle registrations up 35 percent over last year in Colorado

Matt Whittaker
Toyota Prius, Rav4, and Scion prototype electric vehicles on display during a 2012 seminar in Golden.Dennis Schroeder / NREL / Flickr

By Matt Whittaker / NewsBreak Denver

(Denver, Colo.) Electric vehicles continue to gain market share in Colorado, with new registrations showing an annual jump of more than 35 percent in the first half of the year, according to numbers from an industry group.

New registrations for battery powered electric vehicles – a different category than hybrid electric-gasoline vehicles – rose to 6,975 in the first six months of 2022, up more than 35 percent from 5,146 during the same period a year ago, the Denver-based Colorado Automobile Dealers Association said in its latest bulletin. 

Electric vehicles’ share of new vehicle registrations rose to 6.4 percent in the first six months of the year from 6.3 percent during the first quarter and from 4.2 percent in the first half of last year. 

During the first two quarters of this year, overall vehicle registrations fell more than 11 percent from the comparable period last year as supply constraints held back sales. 

Even though the market share of new registrations is increasing for electric vehicles, their total share of vehicles on the road in Colorado is only a little more than 1 percent

One of the hang-ups to wider adoption is that many folks have “range anxiety,” or worry that they’ll run out of battery power in areas without chargers.

Although Colorado already ranks highly in recent studies comparing the ease of electric vehicle charging, rural areas in particular are thin on chargers.

To combat this, state officials have been working on a plan to unlock $57 million of federal funding over the next five years to beef up charging locations along transportation corridors around the state.

In the luxury and sports car segment in the state, Tesla electric sedans are by far the top seller in the state, where their share of sales is higher than for the United States as a whole, the group said.

Within Colorado, Tesla’s share of the luxury car market rose to 22.5 percent so far this year compared with 17.6 percent for all of 2021. In 2017, they made up just 3.4% of the market.

Although there are some factors that could cause Tesla to continue making gains, there are also potential headwinds for the Texas-based electric vehicle maker, the association said.

The company has a head start in the electric vehicle market and some believe it has a competitive advantage in battery production and technology. Plus, a 2023 introduction of its Cybertruck could boost sales. 

On the other hand, some of its models are getting stale based on typical industry standards of regular model redesigns. And the automaker is facing increasing competition from other brands who are introducing their own electric models.

“Tesla regularly ranks below average in most measures of vehicle quality and dependability,” the association said. “With a steady stream of new BEVs (battery electric vehicles) scheduled to hit the market, this could be a competitive disadvantage for Tesla.”

In addition to regular folks buying electric vehicles in Colorado, state agencies are also adding electric vehicles amid a push to reduce harmful emissions from government fleets.

Comments / 4

Published by

Matt Whittaker writes about natural resources industries, including oil and gas, mining, renewable energy, agriculture and cannabis. He's been based in the Denver metro area since 2013. You can follow him on Twitter @mattswhittaker.

Lakewood, CO

More from Matt Whittaker

Comments / 0