Germany sees sales of electric vehicles triple

Sales of battery-electric vehicles in Germany increased three-fold to more than 194,000 units in 2020, according to the country’s road-traffic regulator.

Citing the appeal of a more diversified product offering and of more reliable technology, Richard Damm, president of German regulator KBA claimed that “e-mobility has become a mainstream feature of the mobile society”.

Vehicles with full or partial electric propulsion reached a market share of 22% in the fourth quarter of 2020, with the German government well on its way to reach its goal to have 7-10 million registered electric vehicles on German roads by 2030, he added.

Battery-electric vehicles made up 1.2% of all registered passenger cars in Germany at the end of 2020, up from 0.5% a year earlier, KBA said.

With 108,839 plug-in passenger cars registered in 2019, Germany was the top selling country market in the European continent in 2019, with sales up 60.9% from 2018. The plug-in car segment achieved a market share of 3.10% in 2019.

State-funded subsidies of as much as 9,000 euros ($10,900) per battery-powered vehicle have boosted Germany’s electric-car fleet to twice the size of Norway’s, which still reigns as the country with the highest per-capita EV penetration.

Germany’s boon for electric car ownership comes as European nation states are taking unprecedented steps to phase out gasoline and diesel cars.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has outlined a plan to ban sales of cars that lack a plug from 2030, while Germany has recently said it will extend cash bonuses for purchasing electric vehicles until 2025, is set to expand the country’s charging network and make payments for topping up batteries easier.

Looking more widely, California will also phase out sales of new gasoline-powered cars by 2035 as part of its fight against climate change, Governor Gavin Newsom said last September.