Plug-in car sales in Europe overtook China in July for the first time in a decade, even with Covid-19’s dragging impact.
The West European passenger car market, made up of the original EU member states prior to the 2004 enlargement plus EFTA member states Norway, Switzerland and Iceland, witnessed total new plug-in (BEV/PHEV) passenger car registrations reached half a million units, during the opening 7-months of 2020.
Consisting of combined PHEV and BEV volumes, boosted by generous government and OEM backed purchase subsidies, as well as fiscal subsidies in major markets in a response to the corona pandemic and assisting OEMs in meeting tougher EU (+ EFTA and UK minus Switzerland) wide fleet average CO2 emissions legislation phased-in this year, saw both categories record months in July.
While West European BEV registrations reached 269,000 units so far this year, PHEVs reached 231,000 units, with PHEVs outpacing BEVs for the first time this year in the month of July. During the same period, according to CAAM supplied data, Chinese plug-in volumes, that include commercial vehicles, reached 486,000 units during the same seven month period.
According to the report compiled by independent Berlin-based auto industry analyst Matthias Schmidt, European pure EV volumes climbed 34.3 percent year-on-year in the first half, outpacing the full-year 2018 volume, in a year that has seen the market contract 40.1 percent.
With July setting a record for pure EV power at 53,000 units, Schmidt expects the surge will continue, even if EV supply will be choked down once automakers meet their EU7 obligations.
The richest EV model mix in Europe remains Norway, with 43.9 percent of the total car market so far this year, followed by The Netherlands (11.3 percent) and Iceland (10.3 percent).