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French EV Market Up 65%, Finally Some Reshuffling!

The French plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market had 6,433 registrations in October, up 65% year over year (YoY). Interestingly, this time, it was the plug-in hybrids (+118%) pulling the market up the most, with BEVs growing “just” 53%.

The French plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) market had 6,433 registrations in October, up 65% year over year (YoY). Interestingly, this time, it was the plug-in hybrids (+118%) pulling the market up the most, with fully electric vehicles (BEVs) growing “just” 53%.

The October result (3.4%) pulled the 2019 PEV share to 2.7%, with BEVs alone having 1.9% share.

With plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) growing faster than pure electrics, BEVs saw their lead (71% vs 29% share) reduced by 1%, but expect BEVs to rebound in the following two months, thanks mainly to great scores from the top 2 models.

Which takes us to last month’s best selling models. With the new Renault Zoe starting to be delivered, the nameplate hit 1,939 units, its best performance this year.

Elsewhere, we have two surprises in the top 5. In #2, we have the restyled Smart Fortwo EV, which scored 491 units, a new record for the nameplate, while the Porsche Cayenne PHEV came out of nowhere to #4, thanks to 300 registrations. A demand peak? Or will the Porsche SUV become a regular customer of the top 5? To be continued…

In a market usually known for its stability, it seems the French market wants to ditch the “Most boring plug-in market in the world” title, as this time there is plenty to talk about.

Thanks to their recent restyling, both Smart nameplates hit record performances last month, with the Fortwo EV registering 491 units while the slightly larger Forfour EV scored 98 units. The tiny two-seater profited from the record result to jump two positions in the 2019 ranking, to #8.

But it wasn’t just the Daimler brand reaching new heights. Hyundai and Kia also had reasons to smile. Both Kia Niro versions were shining, with the e-Niro scoring 253 units, its best result since March, while the Niro PHEV scored a record 170 units. On the Hyundai side, the new Ioniq has landed, with both versions hitting record results (120 units for the PHEV, 174 for the EV). That means the PHEV climbed to #14 while the Ioniq Electric joined the top 20 in the #18 spot.

Another surprising nameplate to join the ranking was the evergreen Volkswagen e-Golf, which hit a record 105 units last month, an amazing feat for an EV that has its successor already being advertised all over Europe.

While there are a bunch of interesting things going on in the top 20, it is below that we find a series of newly arrived models that should become top 20 presences soon, many of them coming from the PSA stable. These include the just landed DS 3 Crossback EV, which scored 110 units in its landing month, the DS 7 Crossback PHEV (81 units), and the Peugeot 508 PHEV (40).

Oh, and a certain Peugeot 208 EV has also landed last month. It had only 50 registrations, but do not get fooled — the small hatchback will be the star of the new (and ever growing) PSA plug-in lineup, possibly running with the Zoe for the 2020 best seller title.

Outside the Peugeot–Citroen orbit, we also welcome the new BMW 330e, which scored 110 units registrations last month and should be a top 20 presence soon.

In the brand ranking, Renault (30%, down 1%) continued in the leading position, while Tesla (12%, down 1%) is firmly in the 2nd spot, all while Kia, BMW, and Nissan (each with 7%) running for the last place in the podium.

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Written By

Always interested in the auto industry, particularly in electric cars, Jose has been overviewing the sales evolution of plug-ins through the EV Sales blog since 2012, 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 now a partner in EV-Volumes and works with the European Alternative Fuels Observatory on EV sales matters.


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