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Renault Zoe Climbs To #1

The European EV market had more than 17,000 registrations in May, representing just a 1% increase over June 2015. The slowdown in these last couple of months is largely due to fiscal changes in Germany. Nevertheless, the market is set to surpass 200,000 units by year end, possibly even reaching 250,000 units. Let’s look at the monthly ranking….

Despite dropping 3% year over year (YoY) to 2,481 units, the French hatchback is finally fulfilling expectations. With Renault actively selling the car, the Zoe reached the monthly leadership for the third time this year. With the French auto market going into holiday-season mode for the next two months, Germany, Zoe’s second-largest market, will have to make up for the loss. Good thing, then, that a tidal wave of sales is expected there, now that the incentives just kicked in….

#2 Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-In Hybrid

The Japanese SUV’s sales have dropped 12% YoY, to 1,757 units, ending the month in 2nd. Although growing in important markets, like Norway and Sweden, Mitsubishi hasn’t found a way to replace the average 300–400 units/month it had last year in the Dutch market and to stop the sales slowdown in the UK.

#3 Nissan LEAF

Sales of the Japanese hatch were up 7% in May, to 1,572 units, not that far from the Outlander PHEV, and it has France and Norway to thank for that, where it sells more than half of its volume. The question is: Can it keep up? The LEAF is getting a bit old now, and 250 kilometers of range (NEDC) are not enough to fight longer-range BEVs (the new BMW i3, 2017 Chevrolet Bolt, Opel Ampera-e…) coming soon, so unless something happens, the most common EV in the world will have a hard time in Europe in the next year or so.

#4 Tesla Model S

The (not so) surprise of the month, Tesla’s sports-sedan-that’s-actually-a-liftback offered the usual last month of the quarter peak performance, reaching #4, with 1,484 units registered. This is a somewhat disappointing result, considering that, during the last sales peak (March ’16), it delivered 2,380 units, and in June 2015, 2,104 deliveries. Is the Model S becoming passé, now that the Model X is arriving to European shores?

#5 VW Passat GTE

Thanks to Sweden and Norway, where, combined, it sold 686 units, Volkswagen’s midsize offering reached the 5th Position in June, with 1,117 units sold, its best score this year. With the right mix of space, practicality, low carbon emissions and power, the Passat GTE is destined for success as a company car for middle managers across Europe, something that could only be realized by the new incentives in Germany. Will we see the Passat GTE reach the podium this summer?


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