Despite dropping growth rates, the European passenger plugin car market is still expanding (+10 % in March), especially when compared to the entire market, which is still falling off a cliff, down 19 per cent YoY last month (marking its 9th consecutive month on the red).
In March, about 250,000 plugin vehicles were registered, making it the second greatest month on record. In the first quarter of the month, 565,000 units were registered, up 24% year on year.
BEVs were the sole source of increase last month (+47 % YoY). BEVs continue to gain traction, while PHEVs have experienced a large drop (-22%), putting the YTD plugin hybrid tally in the red (-7 %). As a result, pure electrics saw a large increase in their share of plugin vehicle registrations last month (62 % vs. 38 %), resulting in a three-point market share gain in the year-to-date tally (58 % vs 42 % ).
With plugin registrations increasing at a rapid pace and the entire market falling, plugin car market share had to increase dramatically, which it did. Last month, plugin vehicles accounted for 22% of the total European auto market (14 % full electrics/BEVs). As a result, the percentage of plug-in vehicles (PEVs) in 2022 has increased to 21%. (12% for BEVs alone).
It’s also worth noting that, aside from the EV disruption, other issues are affecting the general market, such as the chip scarcity, which is causing most OEMs’ registrations to plummet.
However, there are certain exceptions. Plugin-friendly Kia (+22% YoY) is the greatest winner from the current upheaval among the major players. It finished March in seventh place, ahead of Ford and Renault, and if we look further down, we can find a pattern among the other fast-growing companies: a hundred % BEV In March, Tesla (+73 %) jumped to #19, only 6,000 units behind Volvo, while the fully electric MG (+60 %) finished in #25, ahead of Land Rover (!), and the extensively electrified DS (+22 ) finished in #29, ahead of Lexus.
In these turbulent times for the automotive industry, the only way to survive is to electrify the lineup the faster the better.
TOP 5 EV models March 22
23,198 people signed up for the Tesla 3 this month, but it looks like its sales are levelling off. The average number of units sold each month in Q1 is 10,967, which is only a 6% increase over the same period in 2021. This question is about how long it will take for Europe to run out of Model 3 cars. Here, sedans are not as popular as station waggons or the newer “crossover” body style, which is a station waggon on stilts. I don’t think it’s too soon to tell. So, now that the Tesla Model Y is on the market, most people who want to buy a Tesla will choose the Y over the 3. March was a good month for Tesla’s Model 3. The company delivered 5,516 cars in Germany, 3,882 in France, and 6,457 in the UK, with Norway (1,696) coming in last.
The Model Y had its best month ever, with 19,500 registrations. When Giga Berlin gets going and the midsize crossover outsells its sedan sibling in sales, that number will be even better. This year, will it win a Best Seller award in the general market? We’ll find out. According to last month’s sales, the Model Y’s main markets were Germany (2,529 units), the UK (6,464), Norway (3,305), and Sweden, which is a big fan of station waggon crossovers (1,363).
It’s been a good year for the Fiat 500e. It won a bronze medal again for having the most deliveries in March, with 6,554 units. If you look at the other cars that are competing with the Fiat EV, there are some wrinkles on them. The VW e-Up, the Smart Fortwo, and the Renault Twingo EV are all getting more expensive, and so are the Dacia Spring and the Dacia Logan, which are more affordable. That makes it the first choice for electric cars in the city. It sold well in Germany, France, and the United Kingdom last month, but not so well in Italy (498 units).
Kia Niro EV is number four on our list of the best electric cars. The Korean tall waggon crossover is still a great deal. It doesn’t really stand out on any one thing, but it also doesn’t have any flaws, which helps it keep going even when its successor is coming. A lot of people bought it in March, making it the best-selling model for Hyundai–Kia that month. Last month, the Niro EV sold the most cars in the UK (1,900), followed by France (584), then Germany (533) and Spain (316).
Volkswagen ID.4 is the fifth number. After an “unexpected” break, the German crossover made its way back into the top five in March with 5,070 registrations. Is the Volkswagen crossover going to be one of the best-selling cars for the next few months or will it fall off the list? I can’t tell yet. In the next few months, the German model will face problems all over the place. There are chip shortages, problems with Ukraine suppliers, and battery shortages. Back to March’s results, the best place for the Volkswagen electric car was Norway, where it sold 1,111 cars. It also sold 973 cars in Germany, 906 in Sweden, and 206 in the UK, which is becoming more important (900).
When you look at the rest of the March table, at number 9 the Hyundai Kona EV had its best sales figure in a year, with 4,204 sales. But that wasn’t enough to beat the Renault Zoe and the Peugeot 208 EV in the subcompact category in March. It took the title in the PHEV field last month, with 4,938 registrations. A Peugeot 3008 PHEV is still on top of the YTD chart for this type of car.
This table has three record-setting performances in the second half of the table: SAIC’s MG eHS crossover sold 3,285 units for the first time, making it into the top 20 for the first time. It was a good month for another nameplate made in China, the number 19 Polestar 2. There were 3,139 registrations for this one. There are five cars made in China here: the Tesla Model 3 and Y, the Dacia Spring, the MG eHS, and the Polestar 2. Out of the five, three-hit record scores, which says a lot about what is going on right now.
The number 14 BMW i3 had its best month ever! i3’s record 3,788 registrations are amazing for a 9-year-old model, especially since BMW recently decided to stop making the i3 and start making other cars instead (insert shooting themselves in the foot comment). Since it was the best-selling BMW in the table, the little veteran beemer also made the top 20. This means that it is a future classic because of how well it looks now.
Below the top 20, we have the two most recent BMW models getting ready to ship. A record number of people signed up for the BMW iX and the BMW i4. It will be much more difficult for the i4 to win the best non-Tesla midsize car prize because there are four other cars ahead of it that are all competing for the bronze medal. The Ford Mustang Mach-E has 2,403 registrations, the Polestar 2 has 3,139, the Kia EV6 has 3,116, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 has 3,355, and the Kia EV6 has 3,116.
BMW, Mercedes, and Audi have been in charge of the European midsize car market for a long time, but none of the above are from them. There are only 1,705 Mercedes EQCs and 1,807 BMW iX3s, and Audi won’t be in this race for another year. The i4 has a lot of work to do to compete.
Other than that, a few more models should be talked about. There were more registrations of Volvo’s new, cheaper Volvo XC40 EV this month than ever before. The Skoda Enyaq had 3,086 registrations, and the Mini Cooper EV had 3,012 registrations, which were close to making the top 20.
Looking at the 2022 rankings, Tesla had two victories. The Model 3 and Y were both at the top of the podium in March, and the Y jumped three places to become the second-placed car.
With both models already having a big lead over the third Fiat 500e, the only question is which one comes first. In the rest of the year, will the crossover beat the sedan?
In the beginning, the VW ID.4 had a bad start, but now it’s on the mend. The crossover has moved up seven places to 5th, making it part of a 100% BEV top 5.
As for PHEVs, the #6 Peugeot 3008 PHEV has the title for now, but the winner in 2021, the Ford Kuga PHEV, is getting close. Ford’s crossover is now in 10th place, up four places. This could be a fun race to watch.
Other than that, there were a lot of changes in the second half of the table. The BMW i3 came in at number 20 and the Dacia Spring and Peugeot e-208 moved up to number 14 and number 15.
There’s also the VW ID.3, which moved up a spot and now stands at number 17. This is a big change from the fourth place it was last year.
But the German hatchback isn’t the only one that has seen a big drop in the rankings. Other smaller electric cars, like the Renault Zoe and the Peugeot e-208, have also seen a big drop in the rankings. This shows how less important cheaper models are in the table, but we’ll talk more about this later.
One good thing is that plug-in hybrids are losing members. Six PHEVs were on the table in February; now, there are five. If we look back a year, there were 10 plug-in hybrids. In April, we might only have four people. At number 19, Mercedes GLC looks like it’s not going to be able to hold on.
In the automaker rankings, we have a surprise: Tesla (10.5 %) came out of nowhere to take the top spot, taking BMW (9.1 %) with it. Mercedes (8.9 %) was down to the last place on the podium.
Volvo came in fourth with 6.1% of the vote, down 0.3 percentage points. Kia came in fifth with 6.0% of the vote, down 0.3 percentage points (5.7 %). Peugeot had a bad month. It lost 0.7 % of its market share and fell from 4th to 8th in a month. In terms of market share, it is now behind Volkswagen and Audi, both of which have 5.9%.
By group, Volkswagen Group has 17.5 % of the market, down by 1.2 points. Stellantis is in second place in the race now (14.7 %, down 1.2 points). This is how it worked: The second-place multinational conglomerate kept a good distance from the bronze medalist, Hyundai–Kia (11.3 % , down 1.0 point).
There were also some gains for the fourth-place BMW Group (11.1 %, down 0.8), which now has a better chance of competing with the two Korean groups. Will we see a change in April?
In fifth place, we now have Tesla, which has beaten the Mercedes-Benz Group in terms of sales (10.2 %, down 0.6).
Each country has its own best-sellers.
A few months ago, I told a reader that European markets are very different from one another because of different tax incentives and consumer tastes. Now I’ll tell you which products are the best sellers in the top 18 European markets, so you can better understand each one.
In the beginning, let’s say which countries have the most PHEVs.
People in Belgium and the Netherlands are most likely to buy the Volvo XC40 PHEV, which was made in Belgium, so there might be a preference there.
Also, Finland and Poland choose the midsize XC60 PHEV as their favourite. In Finland, the Swede won, which isn’t really a big surprise. It would be hard to live in such a bad place, so PHEVs and SUVs would always be popular there. In Poland, the XC60 was the winner. I was surprised by this fact. It might be easier to buy a PHEV in Poland because there are so many miles between cities.
People in Portugal buy the BMW 3 Series PHEV the most. Because the midsize BMW has been a favourite there for a long time, and this is a market that isn’t very open to new brands, this isn’t really a surprise. Because, in fact, it should be one of the few places where the BMW i4 will easily beat the Tesla Model 3.
People in Denmark kept having a weird crush on the Ford Kuga PHEV. If someone could explain this to me, I’d be grateful. …
In Italy, instead of the Fiat 500e, the best-selling plug-in is something else: a Chevy Volt.
In this case, the Jeep Compass PHEV. When Fiat bought Chrysler Group, Jeep got a kind of “Golden Visa” in Italy. This is because the Compass and Renegade were made in Italy, which made it easier for Jeep to get into Italy. People in Italy like both the Jeep Compass PHEV and the Jeep Renegade PHEV.
The best-selling BEVs
A Tesla-painted map is what you would expect. Even so, there are a lot of differences. Some countries like the Model 3 better than the Model Y: Germany, France, Spain, Poland, and Switzerland (UK, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Austria, Portugal). Most of the big countries on the continent are fans of the Model 3. This might be because people in these countries drive more (longer distances). Because range is important, they might choose the more efficient Model 3 because it has a longer range than the Model 2.
So when it comes to the Model Y, it isn’t a surprise that people who like to use things like the Model Y, but I was surprised that people in Britain were more interested in a crossover, especially since it came out so recently.
Tesla is the only company that hasn’t won in Italy. The Fiat 500e and the Dacia Spring won in Romania because they both had a home field advantage. Nonetheless, it’s interesting to see that the Belgians and Dutch have similar tastes when it comes to electric cars. The Skoda Enyaq won in the Netherlands, while its Audi Q4 e-tron cousin won in Belgium.
As for Korean cars, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 took first place in Ireland, as did the Kia EV6. The Kia Niro EV tall waggon, which isn’t very well known, won in Sweden. It beat Tesla, Volvo, and Polestar, which are all well-known in Sweden. Maybe Jantelagen is doing what it does.