Affordable Dacia Spring takes pole as France hits record 23.5% EV plug-in share – .


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In November, France, the second largest car market in Europe, hit a record 23.5% share of plug-in electric vehicles, up from 14.8% a year ago. Legacy diesels and spark plug-less hybrids continued to stagnate below 20%, with gasoline catching its breath at just under 37%, before its next dive. The overall auto market was down almost 30% from seasonal standards, to just under 122,000 units. Europe’s most affordable all-electric, the Dacia Spring, took the top spot in plug-ins in November with 2,895 sales.

November’s combined plug-in result of 23.5% included full electric batteries (BEVs) at 13.5%, with plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) taking 10.0%. This continues the recent trend of reweighting towards BEVs from more equal contributions in H1 2021.

The cumulative share of plugins in France for 2021 now stands at 17.6%, against 10.2% at this stage in 2020. The last 3 months have seen a cumulative share of 22.6%.

Diesel and plugless hybrids continued to stagnate. The diesels have been below 20% for each of the past 4 months. Meanwhile, the technology of the plush hybrids of the late ’90s peaked at 19.3% in August and has fallen to around 18% since.

Gasoline had a slight hold in November, regaining 36.7% of new sales against 36.0% in October. It will however be a temporary stop on the highway towards oblivion. For the context, in November 2019, just two years ago, oil held a share of around 60%.

Popular BEV models

This month we have an early release of top-selling BEV data, thanks to AAA data.

The Dacia Spring, after its extremely rapid rise to fourth place among European BEVs in October, became the French bestseller in November, with 2,895 units delivered. That puts it well ahead of long-term favorite Renault Zoe, at 2,189 units.

The success of Spring is quite logical: it is the most affordable BEV in Europe, and starts from around € 12,400 in France after various incentives. November is the first month it is available in these volumes in the country.

The Spring’s small size (while still accommodating 4) is ideal for both European urban areas and narrow rural roads. With a range of 150-180 km on the highway and closer to 280 km in slower city driving, the Spring has pretty good range for the price. On a single charge, the Spring can cover the average weekly commuting distance in France (~ 170 km).

Some might wonder if the spring victory in November in France is just a fluke of delivery logistics, but it is not. Even though it only recently started delivering in volume, Spring is already at the top of the rankings for the past three months:

Spring continues to climb in monthly volumes (previously it was closer to 2,000 units) and – if supply is sufficient – has all the potential to maintain at least 3,000 units per month (if not considerably more). This will give him an even bigger gap over the Renault Zoe runner-up.

The remainder of the rankings for the past three months reflect the steady-state delivery volume of most of BEV’s top models, closely mirroring November’s standalone rankings.

The Tesla Model Y is the other exception; having only appeared recently, and still with a few months of weak supply (only 26 deliveries in October), it should steadily climb above the No. 12 place it currently occupies, closer (then exceeding ) of the n ° 7 place it occupied in the November ranking.

Once production at the Berlin Gigafactory increases, the Model Y could move its sibling, the Tesla Model 3 to the top 3 spots. This is of course unlikely to happen until the more affordable standard-range version is available – currently only the long-range Model Y variants are on offer starting at € 60,000. This is a significant departure from the entry price of € 44,000 for Model 3.

Granted, for the Dacia Spring and most of the other better BEVs, supply constraints are still in play, rather than demand constraints. The Kia Niro and Hyundai Kona still have very long waiting lists in Europe, for example.

The MG ZS, (ranked n ° 4 in France as of August) is another under-supplied vehicle compared to potential demand. Especially now that the refreshed ZS has 440 km (273 miles) of WLTP range and an exceptional 7 year warranty.

Dacia Spring. Image Courtesy: Dacia

Spring’s success speaks volumes about the largely unmet demand from European consumers for affordable BEVs. This is the revolution that awaits behind the scenes all those who put affordable electric vehicles on the European market (less than € 20,000 or even less than € 15,000). Spring is the first to do so, but it won’t be the last. The BYD Yuan and the BYD Dolphin, both in the top 20 in China, will also do very well in Europe, for example, if they can start well below € 20,000.

Having high volume BEVs at these price points will dramatically speed up Europe’s transition, making almost all non-BEVs redundant and unsaleable well beyond 2025 *. This schedule will then effectively remove almost all combustion vehicles from the daily drive fleet by 2035, dramatically improving urban air quality, eradicating climate emissions from road transport and shifting energy budgets towards more renewable energies. .

*In all scenarios, the new ICE vehicles won’t be salable for much longer anyway, as the BEV Cat is already so obviously out of the bag now (thank you Tesla) and widely recognized as the best, most economical, and best choice. the cleanest. choice. People will quickly refuse to buy “new” ICE vehicles. So automakers would be better off making the transition as soon as possible if they want to stay in business.


At the end of last month’s report, I was still expecting more than 25% in November, based on recent momentum and the historic rate of seasonal rise, but we’re not there yet. Given this slight break in trend, it’s hard to know how far things will go during the December peak.

It’s almost certain that we’ll see some plugin share in the 1920s (at or above 27%), and I’d still bet 30% to be violated, but we’ll have to wait and see. To reiterate – this is not limited demand, rather it is about the number of BEVs that automakers are able (or willing) to supply.

It is also about the automakers to stir up their limited supplies in European markets. The much larger market of Germany had already recorded a plug-in share of over 30% in October, showing that consumer sentiment is changing very quickly, and obviously faster than most automakers are prepared.

What are your thoughts? Are you on a waiting list for a BEV? Please jump into the comments and let us know.

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