This report covers everything you need to know when it comes to the Electric Vehicle (EV) market in 2022, whether you’re looking for your first EV, an upgrade, or just browsing, this report tells you everything you need to know when it comes to the state of play of electric vehicles.
The global electric vehicle market has continued to grow over the last decades since General Motors mass-produced the first modern electric car in 1996 (the first-ever electric car was actually invented back in 1837! But that’s a story for another time), and has kicked into higher gear over the last few years. Between 2015 and 2020, yearly sales of electric cars have increased a massive 444%, going from around 500,000 sales to just shy of 3 million per year over the five years.
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The Most Popular EVs in the World
Considering an EV? Can’t decide which one to get? Look no further. We ranked over 70 EVs based on their relative google search volumes to show you which models are getting the most attention from consumers in 2021.
#1 Tesla Model 3 – 2,240,000 Monthly Searches
The Tesla Model 3 is by far the most talked-about EV of 2021, with a monthly search rate of 1 million above the number 3 on this list. Tesla’s Model 3 is undeniably one of the best EVs in the market, boasting great performance and range paired with a sophisticated drivetrain and a stylish high-tech interior. To boot, the Model 3 is the cheapest car in the Tesla range, making it more attractive to first-time buyers. When it comes to speed and acceleration, the Performance Model 3 would also very likely give most supercars a run for their money. It’s small, it’s fast, and its cutting-edge technology makes the Model 3 something really special.
#2 Tesla Model S – 1,500,000 Monthly Searches
If you’re looking for something as exciting and high-performing as the Model 3 but all want more room and practicability, then look no further than the Model S’s roomy cabin and wide tailgate. The Model S is loaded with high tech, including an autopilot, which allows the driver elements of hands-free control, especially on motorways. With continuous updates, the Model S offers a supercharge capability, able to reach a range of 200 miles on just a 15-minute charge. The Model S has been the unrivaled leader of EVs for the best part of a decade.
#3 Tesla Model Y – 1,220,000 Monthly Searches
Tesla appears to dominate the market when it comes to popularity, holding all three top spots for most searched for electric cars on Google. The Model Y is essentially a bigger, more spacious Model 3, and offers just as much practicality, range, and comfort. The only downside may be its two-ton weight, which has picked up a reputation for an overly firm driving experience. Despite this, the Model Y can achieve a very impressive 0-62mph in under 5 seconds.
The Most Popular EV Manufacturers in the World
We also looked at which manufacturers of electric vehicles were the most searched for in the market. For this list, we only considered manufacturers that specialised in electric vehicles. These manufacturers are both the most popular manufactures in the world and within the US.
#1 Tesla – 11,100,000 Monthly Searches
Named after inventor and electrical engineer Nikola Tesla, Tesla Inc. has dominated the global EV market for years, however, that might be about to change. In the US, there have been two massive Tesla recalls due to issues with their software, which CEO Musk claims is not a safety issue. The recent problems relate to the autopilot feature in many Tesla vehicles which, despite its name, is not a fully effective autopilot system and rather a driver aid. In China, Tesla’s dominance has been whittled away by local brands capitalizing on China’s electric vehicle subsidies, and in the UK the Tesla Model 3 dropped outside of the top 10 top-selling cars.
#2 Rivian – 1,000,000 Monthly Searches
Rivian is a recent and successful start-up company in the electric vehicle space. In November 2021, Rivian priced its initial public offering at $78 per share, valuing the company at $77 billion and seeing investor recognition that it could become Tesla’s major competitor in the future. In December, Rivian announced they will construct their second plant in Georgia, costing $5 billion, which should be able to produce up to 400,000 electric vehicles per year by 2024.
#3 NIO – 1,000,000 Monthly Searches
Founded in November 2014, NIO is also a start-up with potential to one day rival Tesla, filing for a $1.8 billion initial public offering in September 2018. Since then, NIO has seen steady growth and in 2021 delivered a new quarterly record demonstrating a growth of 100% year over year. NIO currently manufactures four models, three SUVs and one Coupe. NIO has also successfully built a functioning network of 700 battery-swap stations, something Tesla has yet to deploy on such a large scale.
The Hottest EVs in the US
In the US, unsurprisingly, the top three most searched for EV’s are also the Models 3, S, and Y, and the most searched for brands are also Tesla, Rivian, and Nio. However, the Model Y overtakes S for the second top spot. Some electric cars are quickly gaining traction in the US market, some of which have seen huge increases in searches in 2021 when compared to 2020.
#1 Volvo XC40 Recharge – 221,900% Increase in Searches
The hottest electric car in the US in 2021 according to US search patterns is the Volvo XC40 Recharge with a massive increase in nationwide searches for this model compared with 2020. Volvo’s XC40 offers a premium SUV experience within a small-car format. With amazing safety features and competitive price, the XC40 is a strong contender in the small SUV electric market.
#2 Hyundai Ioniq 5 – 12,442% Increase in Searches
The Ioniq 5 is a cool car – it just looks sleek. With advanced safety features, competitive pricing, and practical recharge speeds all hosting a very powerful dual-motor set-up, Hyundai’s Ioniq 5 is one to consider for your next EV. The Hyundai Ioniq 5 was named Autocross’ 2021 car of the year receiving a full five out of five-star rating.
#3 Volkswagen ID.4 – 5,483% Increase in Searches
Volkswagen’s ID.4 offers a spectacular EV for under $50k which pairs soft suspension and light steering with a very responsive accelerator to create an easy-going drive. Family life with the ID.4 should be pretty straightforward as it offers superb practicality. Its spacious interior, storage areas, and central bin offer superb practicality for family life in an EV, on top of which is a five-star safety rating in Euro NCAP’s crash test.
EV Uptake Around the World
So, which countries are embracing electric vehicle technology with open arms? We sourced data from the International Energy Agency (IEA) to explore where in the world EVs are most utilized and created a list of the top 30 countries with the largest electric car sales.
China is leading the world in electric vehicle adoption, with over 4.5 million electric cars sold between 2010 and 2020. Not only is China the world’s largest buyer of electric vehicles but it is also the world’s largest manufacturer. Tesla, the US-based company, produces more of its cars in Shanghai than in California. Car sales in China are over double that of the next highest buyer – the UK – and over six times that of Germany, the third-biggest buyer of electric cars.
This is likely a result of China providing generous subsidies for electric vehicles since 2009, and more recently imposing a mandate requiring 40% of all vehicles sold in China to be electric by 2030. This will inevitably fuel the worldwide adoption of EVs as such a surge in the manufacture of EVs will see a reduction in cost both within China and across the world. LMC Automotive estimates that China will be producing over 8 million electric cars per annum by 2028.
Electric Car Versus Electric Truck Global Uptake
While electric cars have been rapidly adopted worldwide, electric trucks are lagging behind – but are expected to make a significant comeback. In 2020 there were just under 3 million electric cars sold worldwide while truck sales stood at just a little over 7 thousand. The IEA, however, predicts a sharp uptick in electric truck uptake across the globe, estimating a massive 1986% increase in 2025, almost four times as much as the increase in electric car uptake in the same time frame.
Most Instagrammed and TikTok’ed EVs
If you’re really after the most sought-after EV then look no further than this list of the most Instagrammed and TikTok’ed electric cars of 2022. Dominating these leaderboards are the Tesla models with undeniable popularity across both platforms. Brands such as Polestar and Rivian, however, are showing some real signs of traction on social media, and have the potential to rival Tesla’s top spot in the near future. Be sure to get onto these sites and talk about your favorite EV or EV brand, or you can even use these sites for research as there is a wealth of reviews of every EV model you can think of.
A list of 88 electric car models and brands, created from carlogos and wikipedia, was used to explore Google search data to see which models and brands were searched for the most in 2020 and 2021. The % change in searches was calculated from 2020’s and 2021’s search results.
The same list was used to investigate how many each model and car were hashtagged on Instagram and how many views videos with their hashtag were viewed on TikTok.
All uptake figures were taken from IEA.