Europe’s EV sales double in Q1 2020, despite COVID-19

Registrations of new of electric vehicles (EVs) in Europe doubled in the first quarter of 2020 by 100.7%, despite the vast majority of vehicle dealerships being closed in the latter half of the quarter, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA).

Both the battery-electric (BEV) and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) segments provided a strong boost to this growth, growing by 68.4% and 161.7% respectively, with a total of 167,132 vehicles registered.

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Hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) remained the best-sellers in terms of alternatively-powered vehicles, growing by 45% compared to 2019, and representing 9.4% of the total EU car market. 232,525 units were registered during the first quarter of the year.

The four major markets, Italy France, Spain and Germany all posted growth in total APV registrations from January to March this year. Germany and France stood out with demand increasing by 74.9% and 71.7% respectively, boosted by the performance of the plug-in hybrid segment.

The vast majority of European dealerships were closed in March as a result of pandemic containment measures, in part contributing to a 32.2% decline in new petrol cars in the quarter.

The number of diesel cars registered across the European Union plummeted by 32.6% to 738,392, with decline dropping in all major markets.

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