Electric Car Sales Continue to Decrease in Ontario

Last year the provincial government of Ontario, Canada canceled their generous zero-emission vehicle rebates causing sales of electric vehicles (EV) to plummet. The cancellation of this incentive program lead to Ontario being the only Canadian province to see a decrease in sales.

According to the not-for-profit organization Electric Mobility Canada, Ontario saw a 55 percent decrease in the first half of 2019. The incentive program in Ontario was a large purchasing factor that lead to the increase in sales prior to 2019. The rebate program offered up to $10,700 USD or $14,000 CAD for the purchase of an EV. The government claimed that they cancelled the program because too many people who could already afford an EV were getting the rebates, which was not the intent of this program. Analysts believe that this massive decrease in sales in Ontario could prevent the Canadian federal government from achieving their goal of having 30 percent of car sales be EV by 2030. Ontario is the largest province in Canada with a population of 13.4M, followed by Quebec which has 8.1M residents according to a 2016 census.

Overall EV sales in Canada did increase during the second quarter of 2019 by 34.4 percent despite the large decrease in Ontario. Quebec and British Columbia saw the largest increase in EV sales this year. This trend continued to the third quarter as well with Ontario being the only province with a decrease in EV sales. Ontario had a 44 percent decrease in Q3, and Canada saw a 25 percent increase overall.

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