European new car market rebounds in July with electric cars grabbing record slice of the market

Time 1 year ago

Electric vehicles grabbed 18 per cent of the European new car market in July, new figures reveal.

Data from Jato Dynamics shows 1,278,521 new cars were registered in July, down by only four per cent month-on-month from 2019, and the month was the highest performing for all of 2020.

July 2020 was a record-breaking month for EV registrations with volume up 131 per cent year-on-year to 230,700 – the first time that these vehicles were bought by more than 200,00 consumers in a single month, said Jato Dynamics.


As a consequence, EVs accounted for 18 per cent of total registrations in July, far greater than their market share of 7.5 per cent in July 2019, and 5.7 per cent in July 2018.

‘The rise in demand for EVs is strongly related to a wider offer that is finally including more affordable choices. The higher competition amongst brands is also pushing down prices,’ said Felipe Munoz, global analyst at JATO Dynamics.

It may have only been on sale since January, but the Ford Puma has been popular among buyers. It leads mild-hybrid sales in Europe.

Half of these cars were powered by a hybrid engine (HEV), with demand soaring by 89 per cent with top sellers being the the mild hybrid Ford Puma and Fiat 500.

Plug- in hybrids (PHEV) followed with 55,800 units, up by 365 per cent from July 2019, and boosted by new models like the Ford Kuga, Mercedes A-Class, Volvo XC40 and BMW 3 Series.

Registrations for pure electric cars jumped from 23,400 units in July 2019 to 53,200.

Tesla sales dropped by 76 per cent to 1,050 cars following shipping delays to Europe while the Peugeot e-208, MG ZE EV, Mini Electric and Porsche Taycan gained sales.

‘In contrast to the general trend of increasing demand for electric cars, Tesla is losing ground this year in Europe. Some of this can be explain by issues relating to the production continuity in California, but also by high competition from brands that play as locals in Europe,’ said Munoz.

SUVs, meanwhile, also showed record results with 530,800 units in July and accounted for 42 per cent of the total new car market in Europe.

For total registrations, the Volkswagen Golf regained its top spot it lost in June to the Renault Clio, with the French supermini bumped down to second. The Skoda Octavia was third, followed by the Peugeot 208 an d Renault Captur.

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If the current situation continues to improve, we could have a ‘V’ shaped recovery

The Toyota C-HR was the best-selling hybrid, the Ford Puma led mild-hybrid sales, the Ford Kuga was the best-selling plug-in hybrid and the Renault Zoe was the most popular electric car.

Munoz added: ‘Both private and business consumers are responding to the better market conditions. If the current situation continues to improve, we could start to talk about a ‘V’ shaped recovery in the European car industry.

‘However, there are still huge uncertainties regarding how and when the pandemic will finally come to an end, therefore caution remains.’

James Batchelor's avatar

James – or Batch as he’s known – started at Car Dealer in 2010, first as the work experience boy, eventually becoming editor in 2013. He worked for Auto Express as editor-at-large and was the face of Carbuyer’s YouTube reviews. In 2020, he went freelance and now writes for a number of national titles and contributes regularly to Car Dealer.

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