VW bid to topple Tesla as electric car No. 1 falters

VW bid to topple Tesla as electric car No. 1 falters

The Ford Kuga was the best-selling plug-in hybrid model in the first half, with 26,259 sales, followed by the Volvo XC40 (23,791), the Peugeot 3008 (20,751), the BMW 3-Series (19,328) and the Renault Captur (16,477). Schmidt did not break out monthly sales of plug-in hybrids.

Electrified vehicles had a 17.2 percent market share for the first half, he said, 8.2 percent for EVs and 9 percent for plug-in hybrids. For 2021, Schmidt expects EV and plug-in hybrid sales to total about 2 million units in the region, roughly evenly divided, for a 16.7 percent market share.

Schmidt noted that the share of electrified (EV and plug-in hybrids) vehicles was 20.1 percent in June, a figure reached only once before, in December 2020, when automakers flooded the market with zero- and low-emissions vehicles to meet new EU CO2 targets. But June’s figure comes after steady sales growth since January 2020’s level of 7 percent rather than a one-time event.

By group, VW had a 25.4 percent share of the western Europe EV market in the first half, followed by Stellantis at 15.9 percent, Tesla at 14 percent and Renault-Nissan at 12.4 percent.

Germany remained the biggest EV market in the region, with 148,716 sales in the first half, a 10.7 percent share. It was followed by the UK (73,894; 8.1 percent share), France (72,512; 7.9 percent share) and Norway (48,059; 57 percent EV share).  

Looking ahead, Schmidt said he was maintaining a “conservative growth forecast” in light of the EU’s latest CO2 emissions proposal, which calls for a 55 percent cut in fleet targets in 2030 ahead of a 100 percent cut in 2035.

“Expect more clandestine EV braking behind headline-grabbing PowerPoints, before genuine mid-decade liftoff,” he wrote. 

Schmidt expects EV market share to increase by three percentage points from 2022 (10 percent) to 2024 (13 percent), as automakers look to maximize sales of more-profitable internal-combustion models ahead of a 15 percent fleet CO2 emissions cut in 2025. 

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