Article | Last updated: 22/06/2021 | Ministry of Transport
No other country in the world has more electric vehicles per capita than Norway: 54 per cent of all new cars sold in Norway in 2020 are electric, more than 12 per cent of our total car park is now electric, and the car with the highest sales in Norway in 2020 is an electric car – Audi e-tron.
How did we do it?
A combination of taxation rules and incentives are the main reasons for the high penetration of electric vehicles in Norway. Exemption of purchase tax and VAT provide large financial incentives for potential buyers of electric cars, and as a result, a new Tesla has a price tag about the same as a new Audi or Mercedes. Other benefits include free parking on some public parking spaces, no road toll, free access to ferries connecting national roads and the use of bus lanes.
Estimated to almost NOK 19,2 billion per year, it is no secret that all these benefits come with a substantial cost for the government. Incentives have therefore gradually started to change, and local authorities can now introduce payments on toll roads and ferries as well as parking fees and restricted access to bus lanes. However, Norway has a national binding standard stating that fees for electric cars should not exceed 50 per cent of the fee for conventional cars. Work has also started on developing a new tax system for cars that will be economically sustainable after 2025.
The Norwegian government supports a market-driven development of charging infrastructure. In the early phase, before market-based solutions are in place, government investment is provided for establishing fast charging systems throughout Norway. At present time, about 17 100 charging points are publicly available.
The Norwegian government has ambitious goals for reducing emissions from road transport:
- All new passenger cars and light vans sold should be zero-emission by 2025.
- All new city buses should be zero-emission or use biogas by 2025.
- All new heavy vans, 75% of new long-distance buses and 50% of new lorries sold should be zero-emission by 2030.
- Distribution of most goods in major city areas should be emission free by 2030.
All these goals are dependent on technological development making zero emission technologies competitive with the internal combustion engine.