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 23 05 2017 03

According to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association, alternative fuel vehicles (AFV’s) in the Europe Union are off to a very strong start in the first quarter of this year, increasing their numbers sold by 37.6% to 212,945 vehicles.

Hybrid vehicles (HEV) showed the biggest growth with 61.2% versus the same period last year, now counting 111,006 units. Electrically chargeable vehicles (ECV = BEV and plug-in hybrids) grew with 29.9% from 36,322 units sold in Q1, 2016 to 47,196 units in Q1, 2017. This includes 49% growth for “battery-only” (BEV’s) to 24,592 units sold and 13% growth for the plug-in hybrids (21,644 units). The U.S. market showed a similar growth of 49% for electric car sales to 40,700 units sold in the first quarter according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The American car market is about 16% larger.

All the major markets in the EU added many new AFV registrations over the first three months. Spain showed the largest increase (+87.4%) over the first quarter of 2017 followed by Germany (+67.5%), the UK (+29.9%), France (+24.8%) and Italy (17.2$). The growth in Italy is due in large part to the recovery in LPG-fuelled (natural gas) cars, but for the other markets, the growth is mostly the result of strong sales in electrically chargeable vehicles (ECV’s or BEV’s) and hybrid-electric (plug-in hybrids).

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