VW e-Golf #1 In May In Netherlands, Tesla Model 3 Leader In 2020

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With the Netherlands overall market dropping 53% year over year (YoY), the local plugin vehicle market also once again slipped into red, dropping 28% YoY in May to 2,023 plugin registrations.

Because the plugin market drop was smaller, May’s plugin vehicle (PEV) share was a firm two digits, at 14% (9.3% BEV), keeping the 2020 PEV share at 12% (9% BEV), which is still below the 15% of last year but double the 2018 result (6%). Considering that the second half of the year should see a return to growth, due to new incentives, the Dutch plugin market should still end above last year’s result.

Looking at last month’s best sellers, we should bear in mind that these results are influenced by supply chain logistic challenges that the current pandemic has placed on the market. The best sellers reflect not only demand, but also how many stock units there are in the current context.

With this out of the way, last month we saw the veteran VW e-Golf win its first monthly best seller title in 15 months, with 221 deliveries, just edging out April’s best seller, the Kia Niro EV (217 units) and its cousin, the Hyundai Kona EV (212).

Interestingly, the Nissan Leaf was #5, thanks to a year best score of 155 deliveries, being the Japanese EV’s first top 5 presence in 2020.

Other surprises last month were the #6 Volvo XC40 PHEV and #7 Ford Kuga PHEV, with the Swede being last month’s best selling PHEV while the American crossover registered its best score so far, with 118 units, the highest score for a Ford in this market since December 2015, when 538 C-Max Energi (remember this one?) were registered.

And why is this interesting? After years of Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV domination, the PHEV race is now more open and … more interesting to follow, but more on that later.

Looking at the 2020 ranking, the Tesla Model 3 held itself pretty well in the leadership position, losing only 60 units to the #2 Kia Niro EV. With a 217 unit advantage, that should be enough to keep the YTD leadership, especially knowing that a boat with fresh Teslas is expected to dock in the second half of June, with July providing enough units to keep it afloat until September when the regular Tesla high tide is expected to resume.

As for the Niro EV, its Second Place could be in danger in the next few months, with only 144 units separating it from the VW e-Golf, the German hatchback will keep putting pressure on the Korean crossover until July? August(?), when the VW ID.3 lands with some 2,000 deliveries in one month (wild guess), propelling it to a Top 5 position, which will be a good basis to go after a podium spot and possibly even remove the Model 3 from the Dutch throne.

In the PHEV category we are possibly witnessing the end of an era, with the #6 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV now only 30 units ahead of the rising Volvo XC40 PHEV. The XC40 PHEV and another rookie, the Ford Kuga PHEV, have monopolized every PHEV best seller title since February. Expect Volvo’s compact SUV to end the Mitsubishi lead soon and become the new king in the PHEV category.

Speaking of the Kuga PHEV, the Ford model has finally joined the top 20, jumping to #14. SAIC’s relatively new MG ZS EV is now in #15.

The veteran Nissan Leaf profited from a good month (155 units), jumping 3 spots to #8, but one wonders if this was a one-time thing, or is the Leaf back in the top 10 for good?

Outside the top 20, this time there wasn’t much going on, with only the BMW X3 PHEV scoring a relevant number, with 42 registrations.

In the manufacturer ranking, Kia (13%) is the new top dog, with a 78 unit advantage over the former leader, Tesla (13%, down 1 percentage point), while Volkswagen (11%) kept its third spot.

Off the podium, we have Volvo (9%) in 4th, above Opel (9%), which is suffering from the end of the Ampera-e fire sale and the low availability of the Corsa EV and Grandland X PHEV.

Here are those same charts with “Others” added:

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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 472 posts and counting. See all posts by José Pontes