Fiat 500e Shines in 21% Plugin Share Market of France

Plugins continue to rise in France, where last month’s plug-in vehicle registrations ended at 22,926 units, divided into 12,692 BEVs (or 12% share of the total car market) and 10,234 PHEVs (9% share of the car market). The former jumped 33% year over year (YoY), while the latter actually did down by 8%.

With the overall market continuing to fall off a cliff, 23% fell year on year and significantly down 42% compared to April 2019 (last normal April on the market), reached plugins 21% market share last month (12% BEV). Pure electrics once again oversold PHEVs – 55% share of the plugin market against 45%. This is a deviation from the final result for 2021 (53% BEVs vs. 47% PHEVs). Expect BEVs to keep gaining ground all year long.

Year-to-date (YTD) registrations are now over 95,000 units, pulling the market share of plug-in vehicles to 20% (12% BEV). This is already 2 percentage points above the result that the market had in 2021 and is an increase of just over 9 percentage points compared to the 2020 result (11%). So expect the market to hold above 20% by the end of the year, maybe even reaching 30% by then.

For some powertrains to go up, others have to go down, and that’s what happens with regular petrol and diesel sales, where the former (petrol) represents 38% of last month’s sales in the overall market, a drop of 34%, and the latter (diesel) fell even harder and had only 16% of sales last month, with sales falling sharply by 48% compared to a year ago. And this on what was once a diesel-loving market! At this rate, BEVs will surpass diesel cars this year, and diesel sales will be dead in just two years.

Interestingly, plug-in hybrids have seen their sales increase by 19%, which now represents 21% of the market, which means that if we add up all electrified powertrains (BEV + PHEV + HEV), we see that 42% of all passenger cars sold in France last month had some form of electrification, which already exceeds the share of the leading fossil fuel driveline (petrol – 38%). This is what disruption looks like …

After two months of Tesla Model 3 dominance, last month’s best-selling was actually the Fiat 500e, which had an impressive 1,737 registrations. It was its second record score in a row, allowing it to beat Dacia Spring. Yes, two foreign electric cars were in the top two positions, which is especially impressive in a market where Renault Zoe had ruled for several years, and in a market known for privileging domestic models. In the first four months of the year, we had three different drivers (Dacia Spring, Tesla Model 3 and Fiat 500e), and none of them were French!

The remaining podium finish went to the Peugeot e-208, which in turn outperformed an underperforming Renault Zoe. Zoe finished the month in 4th place with 1,052 registrations, just 100 units ahead of the Renault Twingo EV, another veteran of the Renault stable.

Elsewhere, the record for SAIC’s MG eHS PHEV is mentioned. The Chinese crossover finished the month with a record 696 records, allowing it to end the month as number 2 in the PHEV category, only afterwards local hero Peugeot 3008 PHEV. China is rising….

In the second half of the table, we have the Kia EV6, which continues to shine, in # 15 with 403 units. Meanwhile, the Citroen e-C4 EV’s production speed now allows hatchback-disguised-as-a-crossover to appear in the table, in this case in # 14, with 448 deliveries.

Below the top 20, the highlight is another Chinese model on the way forward, with postmodern Lynk & Co 01 PHEV has its best month so far in France, 225 registrations. Expect the compact crossover to reach the top 20 in the coming months.

Looking at the 2022 rankings, # 1 is still in the hands of the Tesla Model 3, but expect Dacia Spring to jump into the driver’s position in May due to Tesla’s expected delivery drought from Covid-19 lockdown in Shanghai.

That said…

With the little Dacia also coming from China, you should not expect a particularly good month from the Sino-Romanian in May either. That should be enough to surpass the Model 3, but will likely see both the # 3 Peugeot e-208 EV and the rising # 4 Fiat 500e get closer. In theory, we could see one fire-model race for # 1 in June. With crossed fingers!

(And Oh Sacré Bleu, only one of them is French!)

The top positions have two position changes. The Fiat 500e rose to 4th place, while the climber of the month was the Peugeot e-2008 EV, which jumped 6 places to # 9. A result of the latter leap was it four Peugeot models entered the top 10.

In the second half of the table, there is not much to talk about, and the only position changes are the Kia EV6 and Citroen e-C4 EV, which climb to # 15 and # 17 respectively. But just below the top 20 we have the MG eHS PHEV in # 21, just 13 units behind the # 20 Hyundai Tucson PHEV. Expect the Chinese crossover to be on the table soon.

Looking at the brand ranking, the top two brands remained stable, with both Peugeot (15.9%) and Renault (11.2%) retaining their gold and silver medals. The last place on the podium remained with Tesla (9%).

Outside the podium, Dacia (6.8%) is stable in 4th place, while Mercedes (6.3%) is sure of 5th place with a percentage point improvement between itself and # 6 Kia and # 7 Fiat.

In terms of OEMs, Stellantis is the largest force in this market with a market share of 30.8%. The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance sits comfortably in # 2 with 19.3%. Hyundai-Kia is in third place with 10%.

Outside the podium, we have Tesla in fourth place (9%), followed by the Volkswagen Group (Hello do you remember me?) in 5th place with 7.3%. Yes, the Volkswagen Group has been surprising missed in battle so far in this market, to the point that it has the BMW Group (6th place, with 7.2%) breathing down its neck….



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