Record Month For Electric Vehicles In France! Tesla Model 3 Firmly At #1

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The French plugin vehicle market continues in the fast lane, with June’s plugin vehicle share of the country’s overall auto market reaching 19% last month (11% BEV). France had a record 37,408 registrations of plugin vehicles, a new record, pulling the year-to-date (YTD) share to a record 16% (7.9% BEV), or 144,518 units. That is a good 5 percentage point increase over the 2020 result (11%), and it looks like France is on target for the 20% share I previously predicted for the whole year.

Breaking down June’s sales by powertrain, it wasn’t only plugins shining — plugless hybrid sales also surged, representing 18% of sales rather than the 9% of a year ago. Interesting. Meanwhile, petrol (39% now, versus 52% a year ago) and diesel (21% vs 29%) continued their steep decline. Overall, 37% of all passenger car sales last month had some form of electrification. Not bad, eh?

More proof that the market is well into disruption mode is the fact that the 199,509 registrations in June’s overall market represented a 14% drop compared to June 2019. Osborne effect, anyone?

Interestingly, BEVs had a comeback last month, with pure electrics representing 56% of plugin registrations in June, allowing BEVs to go ahead of PHEVs in the yearly tally (72,511 vs. 72,007).

Last month’s best seller in La France was the Tesla Model 3, thanks to 5,001 deliveries, setting not only a new record for the sports sedan (and allowing it to reach #8 in the overall market), but also landing the highest score ever for any model not called Zoe. …

Speaking of the French hatchback, it seems the Renault model is recovering, having scored 3,349 registrations last month and ending the month in the runner-up spot (and #14 overall). So, expect it to have a stronger second half of the year.

The last place on the podium went to the Peugeot e-208, which scored a record 1,900 registrations, just enough to beat its less pure and larger stablemate, the Peugeot 3008 PHEV (#4 with 1,828 registrations, also a new record). The crossover did win another “Best Selling PHEV of the Month” title.

In 5th we have another Stellantis representative, with the Fiat 500e beating its Renault Twingo EV distant cousin by a wide margin (1,413 registrations vs. 961).

Another surprise in the first half of the table is the success of the #9 Hyundai Tucson PHEV, which scored a record 853 registrations in only its second month on the market. The local PHEV best sellers should have a serious contender to deal with in the coming months. Expect the popular Korean SUV to continue riding this wave of success, maybe even scoring a top 5 position soon.

Elsewhere, a mention goes out to the record score of the #13 Audi A3 PHEV, which scored 625 registrations, while the little SEAT e-Mii had its best month so far, with an impressive 531 units registered.

In a record month, personal bests were plenty. Besides the ones already mentioned, we have 4 more record scores to mention, all coming from the Stellantis stable: the #7 Citroen C5 Aircross PHEV had 974 registrations, it’s more premium cousin the DS 7 Crossback PHEV had 833 registrations, the Peugeot e-2008 had 833 deliveries, and the Jeep Compass PHEV had 480. So, of the 7 (!) Stellantis representatives in this top 20, 6 had record scores (!!!). That surely highlights the strong lineup of the multinational conglomerate. Opel was even allowed to go on vacation last month….

Below the top 20, Volkswagen Group has a few models in ramp-up mode, like the Skoda Enyaq (282 registrations), the Cupra Terminator Formentor PHEV (440), and the Volkswagen Tiguan PHEV (506 units), with this last one outselling its more famous BEV stablemate, the Volkswagen ID.4, in June — in what could be an interesting race to follow.

The Mercedes EQA (197 units registered) is also ramping up, and we witness the landing of two important models, the retro-futuristic XXL-hatchback Hyundai Ioniq 5 (278 registrations) and the Volkswagen ID.4’s less vanilla-flavored and more attractive cousin, the Audi Q4 e-tron (119 registrations).

Is it just me, or are ALL MEB-platform non-Volkswagen models (Skoda Enyaq, Cupra Born, Audi Q4) more interesting and less vanilla flavored than their Volkswagen siblings?… Is this on purpose, or are Volkswagen designers just too addicted to vanilla ice cream? Moving on. …

Looking at the 2021 ranking, the Renault Zoe was up to the #2 spot, switching positions with the Peugeot 3008 PHEV, but the Renault EV has a steep mountain to climb (2,287 registrations) if it wants to recover the leadership position from the Tesla Model 3. I believe it will depend more on the sports sedan’s behavior (or in this case, on how much of a shadow the upcoming Tesla Model Y makes) than anything else. But the truth is, while the Model 3 is now the favorite to win the 2021 Best Seller title, the Zoe still has a strong chance to reach #1.

But not everything is roses on the Renault team, as the Twingo EV lost its #6 position to the Fiat 500e, with the Italian being the new leader in the city car category.

And Stellantis Group had a few more position changes to celebrate, like the premium-class DS 7 Crossback plugin hybrid SUV climbing to #10 and the Peugeot e-2008 going up to #12.

The second half of the table also saw two Volkswagen Group models shining — the Volkswagen ID.3 (hey, remember me?) jumped 2 spots, into #14, while the Audi A3 PHEV joined the table in #19.

Looking at the manufacturer ranking, Peugeot (15%, down 3 percentage points) and Renault (15%) are now neck and neck in the top positions. Tesla (9% share, up 1 point) closes out the podium, ahead of rising Mercedes and Volkswagen, both with 6% share.

As for OEMs, Stellantis is the major force, with a commanding 29% share. The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance is far behind in #2, with only 16% share, while the best foreign OEM is Volkswagen Group, with 13% share, a bit ahead of Tesla (9%) and Hyundai-Kia (8%, up 1 percentage point). The Korean OEM actually surpassed both BMW Group and Daimler last month.

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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 473 posts and counting. See all posts by José Pontes