Germany has beaten Norway for sales of all-electric cars since the beginning of 2019, putting Europe’s biggest auto market in a position to become the regional e-car leader on a yearly basis for the first time.
Until November, 57,533 new battery-powered cars were registered in Germany, compared with 56,893 of those in Norway, according to statistics posted by transportation agencies in both nations. Norway has sold the most electric cars of any in Europe each year since at least 2010, when the Nissan Leaf, the first mass-market battery-powered car, was launched.
The numbers offer recent evidence that the technology is becoming more popular in Europe’s automaking heartland, where Germany’s Volkswagen, BMW, and Daimler are planning for a major battery-car push. While Norway grew as an early regional hot spot much because of generous government incentives, the country has about 6.4% of the population of Germany and as such their growth is limited. Across the region, governments are increasing subsidies.
“The electric model offensive of the German manufacturers is in full swing,” stated Bernhard Mattes, head of the country’s VDA auto lobby. German automakers will triple their electric car offerings to 150 models by 2023 and spend 50 billion euros by 2024, he stated.
Norway and Germany had a very close competition in electric-car sales this year. Norway held the upper hand for much of this year, with Germany gaining momentum in the last months.
Statistics released by the Norwegian Road Federation OFV show sales in November of new battery-powered cars dropped 27% to 3,697. In Germany, the number boosted 9.1% to 4,651, according to data from the country’s Federal Motor Transport Authority, or KBA.
Even with last month’s boosts, however, electric vehicles remain a small part of the whole picture of the sales and the greening of Germany’s auto fleet still has a long way to go. Throughout Europe, sales of electrically-chargeable cars comprised 3.1% of new registrations in the third quarter, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association.