Hyundai Kona EV #1 In Netherlands In May, Tesla Model 3 Still #1 In 2019

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The Dutch plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market had another positive month in May, with 2,688 plug-in vehicle registrations — up 193% year over year (YoY). That translated into a PEV share of 7.3% on the broader auto market. The year-to-date (YTD) count is now up to 15,537 units, with the 2019 PEV share at 8.3%, well above the 6% of last year.

If we only consider fully electric vehicles (BEVs), the EV share last month was 6.3%, with the 2019 share being 7%.

Interestingly, both powertrain technologies are helping out to pull the market up, with plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) even growing faster (262%) than BEVs (185%), and this is despite the lack of meaningful incentives for plug-in hybrids.

Hell, even fuel cell vehicles (FCEVs) had a record month in May, with 40 registrations, 36 of them being the Toyota Mirai. FCEVs had more registrations in one month than they had during the whole year of 2018!

In May, the Tesla Model 3 (419 units) was surpassed by the Hyundai Kona EV (434), a brilliant performance for the Korean, which makes us wonder how much of a competitor the Hyundai crossover would be to the Model 3 if it wasn’t battery constrained.

The Kia Niro EV (369 units, a new personal best, for the third month in a row!) underlined the current competitiveness of the Hyundai–Kia EVs. Nonetheless, the Korean duo suffers from a serious lack of batteries.

A bit surprisingly, the VW e-Golf was 4th, with 227 units, a meritable performance for a model that is less than a year from being replaced by the much more competitive VW ID.3. I guess name recognition is a strong point here.

Rank Model May Sales  
1 Hyundai Kona EV 434
2 Tesla Model 3 419
3 Kia Niro EV 369
3 VW e-Golf 227
5 Renault Zoe 180

Looking at the 2019 ranking, we have a new face on the podium, with the Kia Niro EV jumping two places to 3rd, surpassing the VW e-Golf and Nissan LEAF. The Japanese hatchback experienced its worst month (126 registrations) since the 40 kWh version landed. The 62 kWh version can’t come soon enough.

With initial production hiccups apparently a thing of the past, the Audi e-tron continues to surge, having jumped 6 positions and now showing up in #11. It registered 161 units last month, placing it as the new Best Selling Luxury PEV.

The Jaguar I-PACE joined the ranking, in #19, thanks to 26 registrations, with the British Sports-Crossover-Thingy being the 12th BEV in the ranking. At the same time, the I-PACE was the automaker’s best selling nameplate in May.

A final mention is due for the Tesla Model S (11 units) and Model X (9), which had their best performances since last January, so expect both to recover soon and join the top 20 during the summer.

In the manufacturer ranking, Tesla (24%, down 1%) is leading the way, followed by Hyundai (16%, up 1%), while the race for the last podium position is red hot, with Kia (10%, up 1%), jumping two spots to 3rd and surpassing Volkswagen and Nissan (both with 9%, down 1%).

Rank Model May 2019 PEV Share
1 Tesla Model 3 419 3,583 23%
2 Hyundai Kona EV 434 2,040 13%
3 Kia Niro EV 369 1,522 10%
4 VW e-Golf 227 1,474 9%
5 Nissan Leaf 126 1,365 9%
6 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 119 958 6%
7 BMW i3 164 887 6%
8 Renault Zoe 180 728 5%
9 Hyundai Ioniq Electric 110 536 3%
10 Volvo XC60 PHEV 18 295 2%
11 Audi e-Tron 161 258 2%
12 Opel Ampera-e 29 232 1%
13 Volvo V60 T8 PHEV 64 210 1%
14 LR Range Rover Sport PHEV 19 170 1%
15 BMW 530e 29 142 1%
16 Volvo XC90 PHEV 15 133 1%
17 Smart Forfour ED 23 128 1%
18 Mini Countryman PHEV 35 101 1%
19 Jaguar i-Pace 26 97 1%
20 Porsche Panamera PHEV 15 94 1%
+ Others 106 584 4%
= TOTAL 2,688 15,537 100%

Source: RAI Vereniging and EV Volumes

Tesla Model 3 & the Gas/Diesel Competition

Rank Model 2019 Sales  
1 Tesla Model 3 3,582
2 Volvo S/V60 PHEV 2,348
3 BMW 3-Series 2,133
4 Mercedes C-Class 1,458
5 Audi A4 798

Comparing Model 3 deliveries against its midsize premium competitors, we can see that it is ahead by a sizable margin. Although, in May, both the BMW 3 Series (579 units) and the Volvo S/V60 twins (591) managed to surpass the Model 3. Of course, June is coming, and with it, another delivery peak for the Model 3, allowing it to recover any ground lost in the previous two months.

Will the revised BMW 330e, said to start selling in the summer, help the Bimmer to shorten the distance between it and the Model 3?

Maybe, maybe not. (The PHEV version of the Volvo S/V60 has less than 10% of the nameplate’s sales.) But it will first have to catch the Swedish twins, and then focus on the Tesla.

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José Pontes

Always interested in the auto industry, particularly in electric cars, Jose has been overviewed the sales evolution of plug-ins on the EV Sales blog, allowing him to gain an expert view on where EVs are right now and where they are headed in the future. The EV Sales blog has become a go-to source for people interested in electric car sales around the world. Extending that work and expertise, Jose is also market analyst on EV-Volumes and works with the European Alternative Fuels Observatory on EV sales matters.

José Pontes has 443 posts and counting. See all posts by José Pontes