With the number of distinctively badged pure electric BEV cars doubling in Germany this year, from 30 to 60, and a significant number of new PHEV models entering the market, Europe's largest electrified market now boasts more than 130 models.
As manufacturers batten down the hatches to meet EU fleet average CO2 emissions targets – one of the single most important reasons for the increase in model supply – Germany continued to heavily contribute to a West European plug-in passenger car market that broke through the 1 million combined BEV/PHEV new registrations barrier for the first time with one month left in the year – despite a returning COVID-19 storm. Across the 18 market regions, the German market accounted for one-fourth (26.8%) of registrations.
Despite being the market’s top contributor, accounting for every fifth plug-in vehicle and maintaining on track to surpass 0.25 million plug-in deliveries this year, Volkswagen Group revealed its failure to meet its CO2 target this year – including its SAIC partner – by less than 1g/km. Wolfsburg will thus be required to submit a cheque to Brussels in the amount of approximately €270 million based on current total yearly sales predictions. VW confirmed to this story that the delayed ramp-up of the ID.3 model was one of the reasons for missing its target. With a first 100,000 MEB production run for Europe in place, fewer than 30,000 had been delivered by the end of November
Another crucial insight from Volkswagen in terms of the re-emergence of corona pandemic headwinds was that any lockdown mild scenarios would not have the same market impact as the first hard shutdown scenario. Dr. Christian Dahlheim, Head of Group Sales, stated on an analyst call earlier this month that around 50% of purchases are from fleets that do not require dealership access. He went on to say that Volkswagen Group plans to meet its CO2 fleet average obligations by 2021.
In terms of the overall market outlook for the rest of the year, the increased intensity of the corona situation in the UK coming just days before Christmas is likely to have the most severe impact on the market during the quiet period between Christmas and New Year. As a result, the market remained on track to surpass 100,000 monthly BEV deliveries in December, thanks to a late-quarter push by Tesla that apparently included some cars delivered from China. Manufacturers’ pushes for that final push to achieve CO2 compliance will also raise volumes. The current monthly volume record is 90,600, which was set in September.