By The Canadian Press
OTTAWA — Electric vehicle sales grew almost 60 per cent last year but they need to pick up the pace even more to hit federal sales mandates expected by the end of this year.
Statistics Canada says Canadians registered 86,000 new battery-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles in 2021.
They accounted for about one in 20 new registrations in 2021, compared with about one in 30 new registrations in 2020.
The federal government wants one in every five new vehicles to be electric by 2026 and one in two by 2030.
A new national sales mandate that will penalize dealerships or automakers that don’t meet annual sales quotas is expected by the end of the year.
Ottawa is also adding another $1.7 billion to its zero-emission vehicle rebate program and Friday Transport Minister Omar Alghabra will unveil new details for how the program will work.