Resilience change prior to the EV transition tipping point

To understand the changing resilience of the incumbent, ICEV-dominated, system prior to an EV tipping point, we can use the same approach to analyse market share, rather than total sales of ICEVs. In the UK, France, Germany and China, the market share underwent a gradual change from January 2009 to December 2019, with ICEVs losing ground, prior to a dramatic and abrupt change in 2020 caused by a surge in sales of EVs and PHEVs (Figure 4.4.10). Conversely, the US has not yet experienced abrupt change, with ICEVs still accounting for the majority of sales.

Figure: 4.4.11
Figure 4.4.11: First row: Changes in ICEV market share in UK, France, Germany, China and US, with December 2019 marked with a red line. Second and third row: Change in AR(1) and variance for each of these countries suggesting a loss of resilience and approaching tipping point prior to the start of 2020. Positive mann-kendall tau trend values above plots imply significant positive trends in these indicators of resilience loss.  

AR(1) and variance, as measured across a moving window, increase in three of the four markets that show a tipping point – UK, France and China – however the change in AR(1) is not convincing in Germany. In the US, which does not show this tipping point behaviour, the trend in AR(1) and variance is not positive, as we may expect.

Therefore for some of the markets that are currently experiencing an EV transition, the tipping point was preceded by changes in statistical measures that we observe in natural ecosystem tipping points. This suggests that these changes may be detectable prior to these socio-technical tipping points and could provide a way to monitor when social systems are losing resilience.

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