EV/Hybrid Sales Surpass Diesels in Europe

Government incentives drives adoption. But consumers are increasingly more open to the technology.


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In September, sales of all electrified vehicles overtook diesel-powered models in Europe and now account for more than one-fourth of the market, according to JATO Dynamics.

This marks the first time in modern history that the combined monthly sales of hybrid (including 48-volt mild hybrids) and fully-electric vehicles have totaled more than diesels in the region, the data forecasting company notes.

Timid Recovery

The overall market across 27 European countries grew about 1% to 1.3 million vehicles in September.

This reflects a “timid” recovery after steep declines earlier this year due to industry shutdowns and continued concerns about the coronavirus, JATO says.

Overall, registrations were down 29% during the first nine compared with 2019 levels.

Changing Power Mix

Deliveries of conventionally powered gasoline and diesel models both fell by more than 10% in September compared with the same month last year.

Gasoline models still lead the way, accounting for 47% of the market last month. But this is down from 59% in September 2019.

Diesels’ month-over-month share for the month fell from 29% to just under 25%.

Charged Up

EV volumes jumped 139% to 327,800 units for the period. This is the first time monthly sales of such vehicles have surpassed the 300,000 threshold or 20% of the market.

The increase allowed electrified vehicles to capture more than 25% of the European market.

Not surprisingly, the top-selling EV was the Tesla Model 3 with sales of 15,700 units in September. It was followed by the Renault Zoe and Volkswagen ID.3.

Toyota and VW were the leading manufacturers of the electrified vehicles.

What’s Next?

JATO expects the electrification trend to continue…albeit with some caveats.

“The shift from ICEs to EVs is finally taking place,” notes global analyst Felipe Munoz.

Although he attributes this largely to government policies and incentives, Munoz says consumers also are “now ready to adopt these new technologies.”