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FINAL UPDATE: Plug-In Electric Car Sales In Aug: All-Time Leaf High, Volt Best In 12 Months

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2015 Nissan Leaf

2015 Nissan Leaf

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The best-selling electric car in the world, the Nissan Leaf, logged its best-ever U.S. sales in August, selling a record 3,186 units.

This marks its 18th consecutive month of year-over-year sales increases, and brings the eight-month total to 18,941 and the total sold in almost four years to more than 61,000.

In fact, with reported sales of more than 11,000 plug-in vehicles--plus unknown numbers of Tesla and Fiat 500e deliveries--this was the best-ever U.S. sales total for electric cars.

ALSO SEE: FINAL UPDATE: Plug-In Electric Car Sales In July: Leaf, Volt Both Do Well

The Chevrolet Volt range-extended electric car, meanwhile, logged sales of 2,511, its best performance since August 2013. The deliveries increased its year-to-date total to 13,146.

With a new 2016 Volt to be introduced next January, sales of the current model (now in its fifth year) appear to have leveled off at roughly 2,000 per month.

A total of 67,698 Volts have been sold in the U.S. since the December 2010 introduction of the world's highest-production series hybrid vehicle.

Soaring BMW i3 sales

Meanwhile, after three months of sales of roughly 350 a month, deliveries of the BMW i3 soared in August to a remarkable 1,025--essentially doubling the number sold to date, for a total of 2,082 over four months.

BMW does not, however, break out sales of the battery-electric and range-extended versions, which in past month appear to have run about 60:40 in favor of the REx version.

There were also nine BMW i8 plug-in hybrid coupes sold, in the first month on the market for the stunning six-figure sports car with the gull-wing doors.

Sales of the Tesla Model S luxury electric sedan are estimated, as usual, at about 1,200 units. Tesla Motors refuses to provide monthly sales data, unlike all other automakers.

READ: Brammo Electric Motorcycle Prices Cut By $5,000 To $7,000

Plug-in hybrids

Sales of the Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid, the third highest-volume plug-in car on U.S. roads, fell sharply in August to just 818 units--fewer than the BMW i3.

That's the lowest monthly total since January, and the lowest proportion of total Prius range sales in more than a year (just 3.5% of 23,427 Prius hybrids and plug-ins sold).

Prius Plug-In Hybrid sales for the first eight months of 2014 now total 11,489.

Each of Ford's Energi plug-in hybrid models beat the plug-in Prius in sales last month, the C-Max hatchback at 1,050 and the Fusion mid-size sedan at 1,222.

That brings sales of the two models after eight months to 5,809 and 8,683 respectively.

Low-volume vehicles

This article will also be updated with sales of lower-volume and compliance cars, roughly defined as those selling 200 units per month or fewer.

The Cadillac ELR range-extended luxury coupe, for example, delivered 196 units, bringing its 2014 sales total to 774 units.

Sales of the Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid plug-in hybrid ebbed somewhat, with August's deliveries of 68 bringing the year-to-date total to 612.

In its second month on sale, the Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive saw August sales rise to 51 from July's 41, for a total of 92 delivered thus far.

The Honda Accord Plug-In Hybrid saw 46 deliveries in August, for a year-to-date total of 267.

The little Mitsubishi i-MiEV electric minicar added another 20 sales, bringing its year-to-date figure to 134.

And Smart delivered another 208 ForTwo Electric Drive minicars, bringing its eight-month total to 1,598 and its overall total to more than 2,500.

Compliance cars

Among the compliance cars, there were another 80 Chevrolet Spark EV minicars delivered, for a 2014 total of 844.

Another 55 Honda Fit EVs were delivered, bringing its yearly total to 318 and lifetime total to 980. Honda will only lease 1,100 Fit EVs in total. 

Finally, 228 Toyota RAV4 EVs were delivered last month, the highest number since August 2013. Toyota has now delivered 2,130 of the Tesla-powered electric crossovers, approaching the production limit of 2,600.

The remaining compliance car is the Fiat 500e, for which monthly sales are not broken out by Chrysler.

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