Tesla Model Y Lands in Netherlands in 30% Plugin Share Month

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The Dutch plugin vehicle (PEV) market continues in the fast lane, with 6,637 plugin registrations logged last month. That meant that last month’s PEV share of the overall passenger auto market reached 30% (20% BEV), pulling the year-to-date PEV share to 22% (12% BEV) and the total tally to 45,426 units — good news, especially considering that the overall market dropped 17% YoY last month, but if we compare it with August 2019, registrations in the overall auto market crashed 36%!

The market share is still down compared to last year’s full-year result (25%), but it shouldn’t be for long, as the market share should continue growing throughout the year, and maybe surpass last year’s result by November.

Let’s now break down registrations between the two basic plugin powertrains. BEVs are returning to form, getting 66% of August’s registrations. That allowed pure electrics to gain a bit more ground on plugin hybrids in the year-to-date tally (54% vs. 46%). Expect pure electrics to continue recovering ground in the remainder of the year.

In August, the plugin sales leader was again the Kia Niro EV, with 753 registrations, placing it as the leader in the overall auto market. The runner-up was the Skoda Enyaq, with the Czech station-wagon-disguised-as-a-crossover registering 487 units. It was not only the silver medalist in August’s plugin vehicle market, but also 5th in the overall auto market.

The Ford Mustang Mach-E completed the plugin podium, with 437 registrations, which allowed it to be #6 in the overall market. That means there were 3 BEV models in the overall Dutch top 6!

Off the podium, the major surprise is the 4th spot of the Lynk & Co 01 PHEV, which scored a record 316 units, making it the best selling PHEV (a first) and the best selling model of any powertrain from the Geely-Volvo stable. The Chinese post-modern SUV could actually become not only a familiar face in the top 20, but also a strong contender (the strongest?) in the monthly plugin hybrid race. To be continued. …

Speaking of plugin hybrids, in July we only have 4 PHEV representatives in the top 20, which says a lot about the changing tides, and expect this number to become even smaller when we get closer to the end of the year.

Elsewhere in the top 10, the VW ID.3 (hey, remember me?) has finally shown up on the table, after a long absence. It made it to #9, while in #10 we have another surprise, with the quirky Mazda MX-30 showing up (now, imagine if the sporty crossover actually had decent electric range …). Just outside of the top top, in #11 is the Mini Cooper EV (see Mazda’s comment).

But the real news in the second half of the table is the landing of the much-awaited Tesla Model Y, in #12, with 127 deliveries, no doubt the first of many appearances on the table.

Expect Tesla’s crossover to win quite a few monthly Best Seller trophies in the coming months, probably already starting in September, thus becoming the undisputed Best Selling Tesla in the Netherlands (and throughout Europe), but the question for the future will be: How will the Model Y’s success affect the Model 3’s career?

We will have plenty of time to discuss this in the coming months, but my feeling right now is that because Model Y’s deployment in Europe is being done in usual “Tesla fashion” — as in, not spilling all the beans at once (first Made-in-China AWD versions, then Made-in-Germany AWD versions, and finally the Made-in-China Standard Range version), we should only have a clear answer to this a year from now, but it is certain that 2021 will be the peak year for the Model 3 in Europe, as sedans are even less popular here than in the USA. Given the choice between the current on trend body (crossover) or another that is associated with grandpa’s car, guess what most people will opt for, even if it’s a couple of thousand euros more expensive.

As such, in the future, expect the Model Y to inherit the best seller status from the Model 3 among Tesla sales, and quite possibly also in Europe’s overall plugin market. Model 3 sales will surely drop, with the question being: By how much?

Looking at the lower places on the table, a reference goes out to the surprise appearance of the SEAT e-Mii. With 103 registrations, it was tied in #19 with the BMW X5 PHEV, with the German land yacht surely making one of its last appearances on the table. The upcoming BMW iX will surely steal most of its sales soon, as BMW’s new, fat big EV is poised to become the 2022 best seller in the full size category.

Another model making itself noticed was the Audi Q4 e-tron, in #17. All 4 MEB-based models are now present in the table. Will Cupra’s sporty Born model become the 5th?

Outside the top 20, August saw the Opel Zafira Life EV score 75 registrations, with the van-with-windows being Opel’s best selling EV last month and confirming the people carrier’s popularity in Dutch lands. Also worthy of mention are the 73 registrations of the Tesla Model 3 (while what really matters is September’s performance…) and the 72 registrations of the Polestar 2. The Sino-Swede is set to increase its sales soon, thanks to the new, cheaper, versions.

Finally, the Audi e-tron scored 70 registrations last month, with the big Audi set to recover some of its mojo soon thanks to its upcoming refresh.

Looking at the 2021 ranking, the biggest news is that the Kia Niro EV switched places with the Skoda Enyaq, allowing the Korean model to climb into a leadership position.

The Ford Mustang Mach-E gained ground on the #3 Volvo XC40 PHEV, with the extroverted American model expected to continue its rise next month by displacing the Swedish model from the podium and making it 100% BEVs again.

A few positions down the table, the BMW iX3 was up to #7, surpassing the Volvo XC40 EV and Tesla Model 3. As a result, all top 9(!) positions belong to crossovers or SUVs.

In the second half of the table, a mention goes out to the veteran Nissan Leaf, climbing one position to #12, followed by the BMW 3-Series PHEV, which was also up one spot, to #13. These models benefited from the two-position drop of the Renault Captur PHEV.

Meanwhile, the Peugeot e-208 continues moving up, now at #15. The #11 Renault Zoe’s rear is starting to appear on the 208’s horizon, so Renault better do something about its electric model (discounts?) — a new set of wrinkles are letting it show its age (it landed in 2012, 9 years ago).

The newest face in the top 20 is the Lynk & Co 01 PHEV, jumping to #17, and it should climb a few more positions soon, while the Mercedes EQA also debuted on the table, in #20. And with the #21 Polestar 2 (575 registrations) not far away from the table, the stylish fastback could rejoin the top 20, especially thanks to the upcoming launch of the cheaper versions of the model.

In the manufacturer ranking, Volvo (10%, down 2 percentage points) is on shaky ground, losing the leadership crown to BMW (11%). Its PHEV sales are suffering due to the new BEV tide.

Rising #3 Ford (10%, up 1 point) now has both frontrunners within range, so we could see Ford (yes, Ford!) lead the Dutch manufacturer ranking soon. (Who would have imagined this two years ago?) Kia (8%, up 1 percentage point) is now in 4th, having just surpassed Skoda, also with 8% share.

As for OEMs, everything remained stable, with the Volkswagen Group (21%) firm in the leadership position, and a failing Volvo dragging #2 Geely–Volvo down (13%, down 1 point). Luckily, Lynk & Co (up 1 percentage point) helped to cushion Volvo’s two-point fall.

#3 BMW Group (12%), #4 Stellantis (11%), and #5 Renault–Nissan–Mitsubishi Alliance (11%) remain stable, but Ford and Hyundai–Kia are closing in, both up 1 point last month to 10%. So, there might be significant changes here soon, as every position up until #2 is up for grabs right now.

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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 466 posts and counting. See all posts by José Pontes