2017 Porsche Cayenne S E-Hybrid Platinum EditionEnlarge Photo
While still just shy of the 30,000 vehicle milestone, cumulative Canadian plug-in electric vehicle sales likely finished 2016 high enough to scale Mount Everest (elevation in feet: 29,029).
While the full 2016 milestone is unlikely to be reached by January 11—birthday of Sir John A. MacDonald, the country's first Prime Minister—it may be achievable by February 11th.
This would mark the 150th anniversary of the Constitution Act being presented to Queen Victoria, allowing for the creation of Canada.
And, quite unexpectedly, the Porsche Cayenne S-E Hybrid outsold the Tesla Model X in Canada during the month of November.
The Chevy Volt closed out 2016 with 272 sales in December. While that was down about 14 percent from November's 316, it was better than expected, as the overall auto market fell 22 percent month over month.
The Volt's 3,469 new vehicle sales in 2016 easily top the 2015 Canadian plug-in electric market leader, the Tesla Model S, which garnered 2,010.
Plug-in electric car sales in Canada, December 2016Enlarge Photo
Adjusting for market size, the comparison is much closer: the Model S represented 29 percent share of Canadian plug-in electric vehicle sales in the 2015, while the Volt was probably just above 30 percent in 2016.
The Nissan Leaf's 75 sales in December brought it to 1,375 vehicles for the year, good for third place behind the Volt and the Tesla Model S.
While Nissan reported just 83 sales in November, fully 187 Nissan Leafs were registered that month—suggesting an uptick in used electric-car imports.
Nissan has sold roughly 4,600 Leafs in Canada, but an estimated 400 used vehicle imports (through November) pushes the total past the 5,000 mark in Canada, one month before the Tesla Model S seems set to cross that level as well.
BMW i-series sales, which include the i3 and i8, as well as the more recent 330e and 740e models, totaled 22 in December, down from 59 in November. Canadians also bought 2 more Mitsubishi i-MiEVs.
Regrettably, Hyundai Sonata Plug-In Hybrid, Ford C-Max Energi, and Ford Fusion Energi sales are no longer provided by their makers, likely due to very low totals.
2013 Tesla Model S with owner Bruce Sharpe in CanadaEnlarge Photo
November Registration Round-up
We estimate Canadian plug-in electric vehicle sales in November at 992, falling below the 1,000 mark for the first time in six months. The apparent surge in Nissan Leaf imports did not offset softer sales of the Model S and Model X.
Tesla sold 50 Model S cars in Canada in November, down by one-third from October's 76 and the lowest total since the 47 sold in January. The Model X sold 62 units, down more than half from October's 137 and well below the prior low of 107 in August.
Despite the slow November—or perhaps indeed on account of it—both vehicles may log strong sales in December, which could interrupt the Volt's eight consecutive months of sales leadership.
Kia sold 72 Soul EVs in November as in October, pushing cumulative Canadian sales past the 1,000 mark. Ford sold 7 Focus Electrics, Chevrolet sold 3 Spark EVs, and Fiat Chrysler sold 4 Fiat 500es in British Columbia.
Uncharacteristically low Model X sales let the Porsche's Cayenne S-E Hybrid's 67 sales in November beat its luxury rival for the first time.
Porsche sold 1 more Panamera S-E Hybrid, while Audi sold 30 A3 e-trons.
2015 Mercedes-Benz S550e Plug-In HybridEnlarge Photo
Mercedes-Benz sold 5 S550e sedans in its second month, 5 GLE 550e SUVs in its first, and 1 more Smart Electric Drive in one of that generation's last months of availability.
BMW sold 33 i3s, 12 i8s, 6 330es and 3 740es, in addition to 29 X5 plug-in hybrids. Its 83 plug-in sales in November put it within striking (or discounting?) distance of the 98 claimed by the Volkswagen group, though the impending arrival of the Volkswagen e-Golf may again put some distance between the competitors.
Finally, Volvo reported sales of 46 XC90 T8 plug-in hybrid SUVs in November. With 482 sales through the first eleven months of the year, it looks poised to hit the 500 level by year's end.