Tesla leads and Toyota lags in electric car transition

Australia’s most popular car maker is among the slowest to transition to electric transport and the country’s most popular electric car brand has ranked as the world’s most advanced.

The ratings, released on Wednesday by the International Council on Clean Transportation, also found car manufacturers in Japan and India were among the slowest to move to zero-emission vehicles, although all vehicle manufacturers had “more work to do”.

The Global Automaker Rating 2022 report ranked the world’s top 20 light-duty vehicle makers according to 10 criteria ranging from the type of zero-emission vehicles they offered to their manufacturing process and future goals.

ICCT passenger vehicle program lead Zifei Yang said the vehicle brands were judged on the same criteria and given the chance to provide feedback to create an unbiased look at the state of the industry.

“Our goal with this report was to provide a data-driven, transparent analysis of automakers’ progress toward decarbonisation in their plans and actions,” she said.

The Washington-based think tank found Tesla performed best overall, with a perfect score for its strategic vision, followed by Chinese car maker BYD, which scored highly for market dominance.

At the other end of the rankings, Australia’s most popular vehicle brand, Toyota, rated among the “laggards” in electrification and scored just 15 points out of 100 for its future plans.

The company is yet to launch an electric vehicle in Australia but has announced plans to introduce 10 battery-powered models by 2026.

Scoring the lowest of all manufacturers, however, were Japanese brands Suzuki and Mazda, with overall scores of zero and 10 out of 100 respectively.

Japanese and Indian auto brands were singled out for their lack of progress, with all but one manufacturer listed among the “laggards”.

The ICCT also found a number of traditional car brands had made significant efforts to decarbonise their operations, including BMW, Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz, which were using more renewable energy in the manufacturing process, while Chang’an, Geely, SAIC, Stellantis and VW received praise for offering a wide range of zero-emission vehicles.

The ICCT found more commitments were needed from all automakers to make the transition to 100 per cent electric vehicle sales by 2035.

“Every automaker has work to do,” the study found.

“Even Tesla’s and BYD’s ratings were weak on some metrics.

“As the transition accelerates, all companies must evolve and grow to keep pace with the changing market.”

The findings come one month after the federal government launched its National Electric Vehicle Strategy which included initiatives to encourage manufacturers to import more low and zero-emission vehicles and support their use with more charging infrastructure.

Electric vehicle sales grew to eight per cent of all new vehicle sales in Australia in April this year, up from 1.1 per cent in April last year.


Jennifer Dudley-Nicholson
(Australian Associated Press)


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