Brussels (Brussels Morning) Germany has replaced the US as the second largest electric car market after China, according to a report from the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research in Baden-Württemberg (ZSW).
China remains the dominant market for electric and hybrid vehicles, with 1.25 million new registrations reported in 2020 – more than a third of the world’s 3.18 million. However, the Chinese market growth is slowing down, up only 3% last year, while the rest of the world is catching up fast.
According to ZSW, the electric and hybrid vehicle market in the rest of the world grew 38% during 2020. Growth was driven primarily by European consumers, with Germany in the lead with a 264% market jump last year, a figure of almost 395,000 new electric and hybrid cars.
Europe as a whole – including the EU, Britain, Norway, Iceland and Switzerland – saw a 134% growth, recording more new electric and hybrid car sales than China, with 1.37 million new registrations.
“The electric car market is showing promising development in many countries, especially in the European Union”, ZSW executive Frithjof Staiss told dpa, attributing the high growth rates to higher subsidies.
Off the mark
Despite the market growth in Germany, which was spurred on by lower value-added tax and subsidies of up to 9,000 euro per car, it is not yet up to speed to reach its goal of putting 7-to-10 million electric cars on the road by 2030. To achieve that would require adding an average of around one million new electric cars each year, Staiss claims.
Among producers, Tesla remains the market leader with some 500,000 new registrations in 2020, but the German Volkswagen Group is catching up fast and was responsible for 422,000 new registrations last year. Chinese carmaker SAIC is in third place, followed by the German BMW Group and the Chinese BYD.