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Plugins 22.4% Share In France, BEVs Up, PHEVs Down, Megane Ascendant

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Plugin electric vehicles (EVs) took 22.4% share of France’s auto market in October, down from 22.9% YoY. Full electrics grew share slightly, while plugin hybrids declined more. Overall auto market volume was 124,981 units up 5.5% YoY. October’s best selling full electric was the Peugeot 208, with the Renault Megane the longer term leader.

October’s combined plugin share of 22.4% comprised 13.5% full electrics (BEVs), and 8.9% plugin hybrids (PHEVs). These compare with 13.1% and 9.7% a year ago.

BEV volume increased by 8.2% YoY to 16,866 units. PHEV volume reduced by 3.9% to 11,108 units.

Plugless hybrids (including mild hybrids) had more share than plugins, at 23.1% (from 18.2% YoY). Combined petrol-only and diesel-only share was at its lowest level ever, 50.3% (from 55.3% YoY). We can expect these to slip below 50% in December.

France’s BEV Best Sellers

After Tesla’s push in September, October volumes of the popular models continued as normal, and saw the Peugeot 208 taking the top spot once again, Renault Megane taking 2nd, and Fiat 500 taking 3rd.

The Dacia Spring, had a low volume month (550 units) this time around, compared to its previous average 1,477 monthly units (and 3rd spot YTD).

We unfortunately don’t have enough depth of data on model sales (outside the top 10) to be able to identify the progress of new BEVs just starting to get delivered in France.

Let’s take a broader overview of the consistent leaders, with the trailing 3-month picture:

Just six months after its first decent-volume deliveries, the Renault Megane has now taken its place at the top of the chart, where it arguably deserves to be. It’s a great compact family vehicle, well judged, and on a modern platform.

Here are the significant gainers since the prior period:

These models dropped position:

Note that the Megane may not yet have reached its peak production volume; there is certainly plenty of demand across Europe for this model.

It’s remarkable how dominant Renault Group and Stellantis are, with 7 of the the top 10 models. As with the traditional auto market in France, small and compact BEV models are highly favoured.


Although October’s auto volumes were up some 5.5% YoY, the auto market volume YTD is still down over 10% compared to the same period in 2021, which was already a low baseline.

Road fuel prices have now come down from their records this summer, but remain high for the year overall, encouraging more motorists to think about switching from combustion to electric. There is no lack of demand for BEVs, just a comparative lack of supply to meet that full extent of that demand.

I estimate that December will see around 18% BEV share and another 8% PHEV share, giving a new record above 25% combined plugin share.

What are your thoughts on the auto market in France? Please jump in to the discussion below.

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Max is an anthropologist, social theorist and international political economist, trying to ask questions and encourage critical thinking. He has lived and worked in Europe and Asia, and is currently based in Barcelona. Find Max's book on social theory, follow Max on twitter @Dr_Maximilian and at, or contact him via LinkedIn.


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