2020 was a tough year. Not only, but also for the Automotive industry in Europe. Many market players had high hopes on catching up on sales in 2021, however in January this didn’t work out as planned. Let’s have a closer look.
Alternative fuel types able to shine amidst the downturn
The start into 2021 was certainly challenging. Due to the difficulties emanating from Corona pandemic the situation across Europe is still complicated. The effects were clearly visible on the Passenger Car registrations which dropped by a massive -27% in January in the Top-5 European Markets.
With – 18.7% True Fleets performed significantly better that the Private Market (- 22.6%) with Italy being the only exception. Within the customer group of company car drivers, it is interesting to analyse the development of the different fuel types in the big five markets. As in real life, there are many similarities but also differences across the countries.
Plug-Ins up, Diesel down
There are two major trends that can be observed in True Fleets: the rise of Plug-In Hybrids on one hand and the downturn of Diesel powertrains on the other. With 11.7% the PHEV share in all five markets reached a new record in January 2021. This is almost three times as high as seen in the Private sector and while it certainly isn’t the only reason for the attractiveness of this fuel type, the current support and appealing taxation for company car drivers is surely helpful. France, UK, Italy and Spain all show increases in the share of this fuel type but Germany in particular stands out. After an already huge growth over the last two years, January 2021 showed a remarkable share of no less than 17% of all the True Fleet registrations as coming with a PHEV powertrain!
The performance of German manufacturers in their home market is plainly visible as they absolutely dominate the market. Mercedes, BMW, Audi and Volkswagen represent a share of almost 70% of all PHEVs registrations from the Fleet Market followed by Skoda and Volvo, as most successful importer brands.
On the other hand, the diesel share of 42% in EU-5 is lower than ever before and declined in all five countries. Again, Italy is slightly departing from his norm with a stable Diesel share of 59.9% which is by far the highest of these five markets.