GM’s Chevy Bolt EV sales started significantly down in 2018 on a month-to-month basis, but they remain slightly up over the same period last year.
It isn’t exactly surprising considering the Chevy Bolt EV achieved a new delivery record in December and ended its first full year of production at over 23,000 units in the US.
The last month of the year is generally good for electric vehicles in the US since buyers are trying to take delivery in order to take advantage of the federal tax credit during the current financial year.
Automakers generally try to optimize deliveries for that reason. It certainly seemed to have an impact on Chevy Bolt EV sales since GM delivered 3,227 units in December.
Today, the American automaker released its January 2018 results and deliveries plunged to 1,177 units.
Here are Chevy Bolt EV sales in the US since its launch in December 2016:
It’s a steep fall, but it’s still a 1.3% increase over Bolt EV sales in January 2017.
In comparison, GM’s Chevy Volt has seen a 55% drop in sales during the same period.
Honestly, I have no idea what will happen with Chevy Bolt EV sales in 2018. The vehicle hasn’t received an update for the new model year and it will now have to compete with the Model 3 more seriously.
Even though Tesla’s new electric vehicle still has a long backlog versus the Bolt EV being in inventory at dealerships, the fact that deliveries are increasing and people are seeing it on the road and in showrooms could convince people to wait.
I think the main advantage of the Bolt EV in terms of deliveries is the fact that it can be leased, which is still not the case for the Model 3. We have heard of great deals in some markets, like leases for about $200 per month in Massachusetts. You can always check with your local dealers for inventory and see if you can find a deal.
Either way, we never expected GM to sell more than ~30,000 Chevy Bolt EVs per year anyway. And now that the situation in Europe is murky with the sale of Opel, the US and Canadian markets are the main sale drivers of the new EV. However, GM said that it will deliver 5,000 Chevy Bolt EVs to South Korea this year.
It will be interesting to see how the vehicle will fair in the increasingly more competitive EV market this year.