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The West European electric car market high voltage hangover in January 2022


Key points:

  • West European new pure electric BEV passenger car registrations accounted for just 10.8% of January's total new car market according to Schmidt Automotive Research data.

  • PHEVs accounted for 9.4% of the 18 market region

  • Plug-in market, and BEVs particularly, impacted by low inventory following December push to meet CO2 compliance and winter production holiday period unable to replenish stock


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During the final month of 2021, Western Europe's pure electric BEV market penetration of new passenger car registrations marked a historic high, accounting for 31.6% of all new passengers cars entering the 18 market region.

Thanks to the now annual last-minute push, similar to a student rushing to complete their homework before a deadline, passenger carmakers left it to the last few days of the year to deliver plug-ins, consisting of pure electric BEV models and plug-in hybrid PHEV models in order to reduce their fleet average CO2 emissions.

January 2022 sobriety

Like any form of excess, it is more often than not followed by a period of sobriety, and the European passenger car market is no exception.

Following the same procedure as 2020 where the new 95g/km (NEDC) European fleet average CO2 target was phased in, causing a Christmas delivery rush to meet compliance, January 2021 began the year with a sore head and low electric registrations. January 2022 was no exception.

Thanks to the December 2021 rush, the first month of 2022 suffered again from low inventory.

Almost all car manufacturers take a traditional two to three week production holiday over the Christmas period leaving little time to restock empty forecourts.

This resulted in January's BEV new passenger car volumes halving to just 79,800 units compared to 175,500 just one month earlier.

Although not as stark, the story was similar for PHEVs.

Next week, a full analysis with data sets and trends will be published in the full study.

Quarterly subscriptions (4 editions per year) are also now available here as well as single editions and annual subscriptions. .

The European Electric Study (20 pages) is published on a monthly basis and covers the entire West European region in a detailed data-driven manner.


May also interest you: Full 2021 year preview: The West European 2021 electric car market data... West European new BEV passenger car registrations reached 1.2M units (1,190,000) in 2021 click here for the story


*Western Europe 18 Markets: EU Member States prior to the 2004 enlargement plus EFTA markets Norway, Switzerland, Iceland, plus UK


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