UPDATE 1-Electric cars rise to record 54% market share in Norway in 2020

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OSLO, Jan 5 (Reuters) – The sale of electric cars in Norway overtook those powered by petrol, diesel and hybrid engines last year, with German auto-maker Volkswagen replacing Tesla as the top battery-vehicle producer, new data showed on Tuesday.

So-called battery electric vehicles (BEV) made up 54.3% of all new cars sold in the Nordic country in 2020, a global record, up from 42.4% in 2019 and from a mere 1% of the overall market a decade ago, the Norwegian Road Federation said.

Seeking to become the first nation to end the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2025, oil-producing Norway exempts fully electric vehicles from taxes imposed on those relying on fossil fuels.

The policy has turned the country’s car market into a laboratory for auto-makers seeking a path to a future without internal combustion engines, vaulting new brands and models to the top of bestseller lists in recent years.

While the sale of BEVs had broken the 50%-mark in individual months, 2020 was the first time that fully electric cars outsold the combined volume of models containing internal combustion engines for a year as a whole.

BEV sales accelerated in the final months of 2020, hitting its highest ever level for any single month in December with a 66.7% share of the car market. Read More

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