Germany is now the biggest buyer of electric vehicles in Europe, surpassing previous market leader Norway in raw numbers – if not market share – while the sale of new diesel and petrol vehicle fall.
The nation saw a massive 60% increase in new sales of both battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) in 2019 compared to 2018, with 109,000 sales to 68,000 a year earlier.
The increase in EV sales in Germany was reflected in the overall European market, which saw a 45% increase according to European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) figures.
The surge in electric vehicle sales brings Europe’s average market share of electrics to new vehicle sales to 3.53%, and comes overall passenger car registrations fall across Europe – down 7.5% in 2019 compared to 2018.
That picture is being reflected in Australia, where the overall auto market is in a 21 month decline – except for EV sales which are on the rise, albeit from a much smaller base than in Europe.
It is an “outstanding foundation for 2020 – especially taking into consideration that stricter emission requirements will push the sales up even higher this year,” noted Inside EVs’ Mark Kane regarding the sales jump.
Big increases in the top 6 European EV markets were seen across the board, with Netherlands also making impressive headwinds to hold 4th position with almost 67,000 new EV sales – a huge 146% increase compared to 2018.
Norway has long been a market leader in Europe for EV sales, and while it still holds pole position in terms of market share (recent figures shared by Cleantechnica show some 56% of the new vehicle market is BEV/PHEV), it saw a modest 10% rise in new EV sales.
In the UK, growth in EV sales remained around an even 20% ensuring it held 3rd place in terms of sales volume for 2019. The recent move by the UK to bring a ban on new petrol and diesel sales forward to 2035 will likely see this increase in future years.
Sweden continued on an upward trajectory with a near 40% increase in new EV sales compared to 2018, but lost out to Netherland’s meteoric rise to fall to 6th position.
In terms of overall passenger car sales, it was France that saw the biggest slump with 13.4% less passenger cars sold in 2019 compared to 2018, followed by Spain (-7.6%), Germany (-7.3%) and Italy (-5.9%).
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.