The Dutch auto market is seeing the light at the end of the tunnel after several months in the red. August was a growth month, and September confirmed the trend, growing 5% year over year (YoY). The Dutch plugin vehicle (PEV) market has continued to grow as well, if only by 13% YoY last month. That’s mostly thanks to pure electrics, 23% of all new vehicle sales, which grew 15% YoY. Plugin hybrids (PHEVs) also remained positive in September, up 10%. In total, 2,999 PHEVs were registered in September, representing 12% of the country’s auto market.
Overall, the year-to-date (YTD) market share for plugin vehicles was stable at 32%. Highlighting an ongoing shift in the market toward BEVs, they had 66% of plugin sales in September, up from the 64% average of 2022.
Lynk & Co’s 01 PHEV crossover is becoming something of a case study in the Netherlands. It won September’s best seller race, its second consecutive Best Seller title in Dutch lands. The model achieved 801 registrations last month, a new year best for the Chinese luxury model, allowing it to end September in 2nd place in the overall auto market. Paradoxically, the Lynk & Co model was the only PHEV model in the top 10, and it was responsible for 27% of all PHEV sales in the Netherlands last month! Now, imagine if Lynk & Co a had a truly competitive (as in, BEV) model!
Next, we have a surprise, with the Tesla Model Y jumping out of nowhere to the runner-up spot thanks to 559 deliveries. That’s a new year best for the Model Y, allowing the US crossover to end the month in the overall top 10, in 9th.
The practical Skoda Enyaq rounds out the podium positions, with 482 registrations, allowing the Czech crossover to end in #11 in the overall market. There were thus 3 plugin vehicles in the overall top 11.
But the biggest surprise on the table showed up in 4th, with the BMW i4 scoring a record 396 registrations. This is a step towards confirming the optimism that the OEM managers have been expressing for the near future. Is the sports sedan finally living up to expectations?
There were other models shining in the top 10 as well, like the Volvo XC40 EV ending the month in 5th thanks to 334 registrations, a new year best. The Swedish automaker is looking to make up for lost time when it comes to BEVs. In fact, its other BEV model, the sportier C40 crossover, also scored a year-best performance in September, 104 registrations. It seems the Volvo vessel is now going full speed ahead towards full electrics.
The #7 Volkswagen ID.4 also had a year-best score, 266 registrations, benefiting from the fact that the German crossover’s availability has grown thanks to the recent addition of the Chattanooga and Emden production sites to the original Zwickau factory.
In the second half of the table, we should highlight the BMW X5 PHEV, in #12. It got 153 registrations in September, its best score in 14 months, allowing it to end close to the #11 Audi e-tron (184 units). That also helped to place 3 BMWs in the top 20 (4 if you add the Mini Cooper EV as part of BMW Group).
Underlining a month with plenty of surprises, the Mercedes-Benz CLA PHEV scored a record 106 registrations, allowing it to join the table for the first time in #19. The sporty sedan was actually last month’s best selling Mercedes in the Netherlands, ahead of models more on trend like the EQA (90 units) and EQB (84). With arch rival BMW finally looking to have the i4 as its future top player, one wonders which model will take that role in the Mercedes stable. EQA? EQB? Other?
Outside the top 20, a few recent models deserve mention, like the new Nissan Ariya. The Ariya had 98 registrations in only its second month on the market. Mazda’s CX-60 PHEV SUV is also ramping up, with 101 units being delivered. SAIC’s Marvel R sporty SUV hit a record 66 registrations, while the electric Fiat Scudo MPV/van-with-windows had its first month of volume deliveries, with 50 registrations.
A final mention goes out to the 28 BYD registrations last month, no doubt demonstration units. These are the first of many that will surely be delivered following the official launch of the brand in a few days.
Looking at the 2022 ranking, the Skoda Enyaq lost some of its advantage over the runner-up Lynk & Co 01 PHEV and now is only 378 units ahead of the Chinese crossover. So, although the Czech remains the favorite for this year’s best seller title, if the Lynk & Co model continues to push forward in the remainder of the year, we might have a surprise soon!
In 3rd place, the Peugeot e-208 also needs to keep a close eye on the rising #4 Kia Niro EV and #5 Kia EV6. The Korean models are looking to displace the French hatchback in the last place on the podium towards the end of the year.
But it is in the second half of the table that we find the Climbers of the Month.
The Tesla Model Y stormed through the table last month, surging to #12, while the BMW i4 did something similar, joining the table in #17.
Finally, the rising Mini Cooper EV jumped a couple more positions, ending the month in #14, or six positions above where it was last July. The electric hot hatch is now the best selling BMW Group model in Dutch lands.
Interestingly, the last two positions in the table belong to PHEVs (the Ford Kuga PHEV and Volvo XC60 PHEV). Next month, we might have a yearly top 20 with only two plugin hybrid models!
In the manufacturer ranking, PHEV-heavy Volvo (9.1%, down from 9.2%) lost the leadership position to Kia (9.1%, down from 9.2%), with the Korean brand now looking to keep the Swede at bay and win the manufacturer title.
Meanwhile, the remaining top 5 players have kept their positions, but while #3 BMW, up 0.2%, had reasons to smile, and at 8.8% share can even try to surpass the top two contenders in the last months of the year, #4 Peugeot (7.3%, down from 7.5%) and #5 Skoda (6.2%, down from 6.3%) have seen their share slide.
As for OEMs, Volkswagen Group (20.3%, down 0.2%) is comfortable in the leadership position, something that runner-up Stellantis (17.4%, down from 18.1%) cannot say, as its share is sliding. Meanwhile, #3 Geely–Volvo has seen its share grow (16.1% now vs. 15.7% a month ago) thanks to Lynk & Co’s extraordinary performance. If this trend continues in the next couple of months, we might even get a surprise in December….
4th placed Hyundai–Kia saw its share drop in September from 13.7% to 13.5%, while in 5th, BMW Group (10.9%, up from 10.7%) seemed to have bottomed out from the falling sales. BMW Group’s transition into a more BEV-heavy lineup is now starting to bear fruit, mostly thanks to a strong month from the BMW i4.