Gasoline, diesel cars continue losing EU market share

  • Market: Electricity, Fertilizers, LPG, Metals, Oil products
  • 23/04/21

Diesel and gasoline-powered cars saw a rapid loss of market share in the EU in the first quarter as consumers increasingly opt for hybrid electric vehicles (EVs) and electrically-chargeable cars.

Figures from industry association the European Automobile Manufacturers Association (ACEA) show gasoline car sales in the EU fell by 16.9pc on the year to 1.1mn in January-March, driving their share of the passenger car market down to 42.2pc from 52.3pc in the same period of 2020. Among the countries registering strong declines were Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and Italy. France was a notable exception among the bloc's major economies. Similarly, diesel car sales in the EU dropped by 20.1pc on the year to just under 594,000, representing a market share of 23.2pc, compared with 29.9pc in January-March 2020. ACEA noted double-digit declines in most EU countries including Germany, Spain and France.

In contrast, most types of alternatively powered vehicles increased market share. Sales of battery EVs in the EU were up by 59.1pc from a year earlier to over 146,000 in the first quarter, with "demand still benefiting from government stimuli for zero-emission vehicles", ACEA said. Sales of plug-in hybrids reached more than 208,000, up by 175pc compared January-March 2020, with exceptional growth in Italy helping drive the sharp increase. And sales of hybrid EVs exceeded 470,000, a 101.6pc increase from a year earlier.

Hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery EVs took a combined market share of 32.2pc in January-March.

Meanwhile, demand for natural gas vehicles in the EU declined by 10.1pc on the year to 14,300 during the first quarter, but sales of LPG-fuelled cars almost doubled to reach just over 46,000, "boosted by remarkable gains in France", ACEA said. France is now the second largest EU market for LPG cars, while Italy accounted for more than half of total LPG sales, it said.


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