The ACEA, the main European automakers’ group, reports sales of electrified vehicles in the region grew 37% in first-half 2018 from a year earlier and cut into the share held by diesel cars, the big loser during the period.
According to ACEA’s midyear sales results, all categories of electrified vehicles from battery-electrics and plug-in hybrids to full and mild hybrids registered both volume and market-share growth, though operating from a small base.
Nearly 90% of electrified-vehicle sales – 434,601 out of 488,504 in total – were in the 28-country European Union. Most of the rest were in Norway and Switzerland, both of which have free-trade agreements with the trade bloc.
If automakers continue at their current pace through December, they will sell more than 975,000 electrified vehicles, a new high. In 2017, electrified-vehicle sales totaled 747,688 units including 135,369 all-electrics.
Between January and June, sales of all-electric cars grew 39% to 88,286 units and accounted for a still-tiny but growing 1.0% share of new-car demand, which grew to 8.4 million units, up 2.9%.
In addition to cars, ACEA reports sales of 1.3 million commercial vehicles, mostly vans. It provides no information about electrification, although the numbers are believed to be very small.
Hybrids, ranging from PHEVs to mild hybrids, registered 37.8% growth during the period, from 292,476 units to 400,208. Hybrids represented 4.6% of new-car sales.
Within the hybrid segment, plug-in models grew to 94,999 units, up 45.9% and accounting for a 1.1% market share. Full and mild hybrids registered 34.2% growth to 305,209 units. Their market share was 3.5%.
ACEA does not separate mild- and full-hybrid sales, although several OEMs, including Audi and Renault, offer 48V systems. Toyota, the leader in the full-hybrid segment, reported 6-month sales of 255,300 units, nearly half of Toyota and Lexus sales in the market.
Against this backdrop, sales of diesel cars in Europe fell 16% and accounted for 36.5% of new-car registrations during first-half 2018, down from 44.9% from like-2017. The share of non-electrified gasoline cars grew to 55.5%, from 48.8%, on sales of 4.8 million units.
By country, Germany, the U.K. and France ranked first, second and third in electrified-vehicle sales (both full-electrics and hybrids, all types) with respective 6-month totals of 78,201, 72,847 and 66,919 units.
The largest markets for all-electric cars were Norway with 20,145 units, followed by Germany (17,297) and France (14,404).
Separately, automakers sold 133,019 cars fueled by natural gas, liquid petroleum gas and ethanol in the year’s first six months. Italy is the leader in this segment.