The top 10 vehicles in the Netherlands in December included six 100% electric vehicles.
December was another strong month in the Dutch market for plugin vehicle sales, with 15,757 plugin registrations. That score could have been even better if other markets, like Germany and Norway, hadn’t had
inflated incentive-derived record months. That might have starved other markets, like the Netherlands, of units. Still, this result translated into a brilliant 51% plugin vehicle (PEV) share, with 44% share from just full battery-electric vehicles (BEV).
These impressive results pulled the 2022 plugin share to 35% (23% BEV), a small jump from the 30% (20% BEV) of 2021, which itself was a positive increase over the previous year’s result of 25% (21% BEV).
These numbers are well above the 15% plugin share of 2019 and the 6% share of 2018, so while these aren’t Tony Seba–like disruptive numbers, it is consistent growth, so one can’t really complain too much. This should allow the Dutch passenger car market to become 100% BEV before the 2035 100% ZEV mandate from the European Union without a sweat.
BEVs represented 68% of the total plugin market in 2022, a slight improvement over the 2021 result (67%), but still far from the 82% of plugin registrations in 2020. Nonetheless, growth is growth, even if it is just 1%, so the Dutch market continues on the right track.
Looking into 2023, there might be a small sales hangover in Q1, something this market is used to, but expect things to pick up again around Q2, ending 2023 with another great result and probably pulling the plugin share above the 40% mark.
Top Selling Electric Vehicles in the Netherlands — December 2022
Looking at last month’s best sellers, and comparing the results to the peak from last December, Tesla and Volkswagen Group were the big winners. The Tesla Model Y was the big surprise winner, with a record 2,296 registrations allowing it to be #1 in December’s overall auto market. Meanwhile, Volkswagen Group took the following five positions! The Audi Q4 e-tron led the charge, in #2, with 1,038 registrations.
Also interesting to acknowledge: with 51% plugin share, the plugin market basically merged with the overall market in December, as proven by the fact that the overall top 10 included six BEVs (#1 Tesla Model Y, #3 Audi Q4 e-tron, #4 Cupra Born, #5 Audi e-tron, #7 Volkswagen ID.5, and #8 Volkswagen ID.4). It also included one PHEV (#9 Lynk & Co 01). And the heavily electrified Kia Niro was in #10. There were only two unpluggable models in the top 10 (the #2 Renault Clio and #6 Kia Picanto). Interestingly enough, both are small-sized cars, which is becoming something like the final frontier for BEVs … something for policymakers to think about.
Still, 8 plugin models out of 10 is great! And one wonders: how long will it take for the yearly ranking to look like this?
Looking at last month’s best sellers, we should disclose first that December registrations are not very representative of general market dynamics, because of the rush to allocate plugins before the year end in a number of markets. As such, the results have more to do with the OEMs’ capability to allocate units to a certain market than anything else.
With this in mind, we should notice that both Tesla and the Volkswagen Group had a high tide. On Tesla’s side, this not only won it the best seller title in December, thanks to the Model Y in particular, but also put the Tesla Model 3 in 15th. In fact, this meant that the sedan showed up on the best sellers table after a long absence.
As for Volkswagen Group, besides the five Volkswagen Group models in the top six, it also placed the Skoda Enyaq in (an unusually low) 11th place, right above the #12 Volkswagen ID.3. Thus, there were seven Volkswagen Group models in the top 20, six of them coming from the MEB platform. If we were to add all those 6 MEB platform models together, we would have 4,487 registrations, or 29% of all plugin sales in December. Not bad, eh?
In a strong month like this, records were certain to appear on the table. Four models hit best-ever performances. Besides the aforementioned record of the Tesla Model Y, the #5 Volkswagen ID.5 reached a record 761 registrations, surpassing its more upright sibling, the VW ID.4 (in 6th with 752 registrations). The BMW i4 also continued to ramp up deliveries, reaching 596 registrations last month, while Dacia Netherlands managed to get 239 units of its small Spring EV in December. That allowed the made-in-China model to reach a record result in Dutch lands.
On the PHEV side, we almost didn’t have any model to mention, as there was only one model to speak of in the top 20 — the Lynk & Co 01 PHEV in 7th (739 registrations). That’s an impressive performance for the brand, especially conspidering the headwinds plugin hybrids are suffering in the Netherlands. That implies that once Geely’s “youth brand” gets its hands on some BEV models (Zeekr 001, anyone?), it could become a true mass market brand in the Dutch market. It complements well from below the more premium approach of Volvo and Polestar. To be continued….
Outside the top 20, the highlight is the BMW iX, with 164 registrations, a new year best. It seems the Big Bad Beemer is ready to start showing up in the Dutch top 20, and hopefully also start tickling Audi’s domination in the full size category. To be continued….
Top Selling Electric Vehicles in the Netherlands — 2022
Looking at the 2022 ranking, we have a surprise in #1, with the Lynk & Co 01 PHEV taking the 2022 Best Seller award. The Chinese crossover also ended up 7th in the overall ranking. (Yep, a Chinese model in the overall top 10. Now let that sink in….) Last year’s winner, the Skoda Enyaq, took the silver medal (and 9th overall), while the Tesla Model Y surged 13 positions in December and won the bronze medal in the last stage of the race, at the expense of the Peugeot e-208, thus signaling Tesla’s return to the Dutch podium (after the #2 position of the Tesla Model 3 in 2020).
The Chinese plugin hybrid model was the 7th different model to win the best seller title since 2015, the others being the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV*, the Volkswagen Passat PHEV, the Tesla Model S, the Tesla Model 3, the Volkswagen ID.3, and the Skoda Enyaq. This diversity says a lot about the balance of this market and the changing tastes/policies in this market. So, will the Lynk & Co model retain the title in 2022? (*Remember when the Dutch were positively in love with that model? How things have changed.)
As seen in the previous paragraph, in this market, one can always expect surprises, so I can’t really say who will win this year’s title, but looking at recent history, the Lynk & Co model will have a hard time revalidating the title due to the market’s consistent volatility. The Tesla Model Y was only #18 in 2021, and now it’s 3rd, while on the other hand, Ford’s dynamic duo, the Mustang Mach-E and Kuga PHEV, were 4th and 8th, respectively, in 2021, and now the two were out of the top 20. Pretty unstable ranking, isn’t it?
If I had to bet, I would say the Lynk & Co main adversaries in 2023 are: its Swedish cousin, the Volvo XC40 (adding both the BEV and PHEV versions together, the Swede would have enough units to reach the runner-up position), the Tesla Model Y, the BMW i4 (if the Bavarian automaker succeeds in ramping up production of its fastback model to meet demand). We could also see a surprise from one of the smaller EVs, like the Peugeot e-208, only 14th in 2021 but 4th in 2022 and with a refresh coming soon. With updated EV specs, I wouldn’t be surprised if the French hatchback, a first-time winner of the overall Dutch ranking in 2022, would win the plugin race in 2023.
Elsewhere, the Audi Q4 e-tron jumped two spots in the last stage of the race, to 6th, while its squad leader, the Audi e-tron, jumped from #20 to #13 in December, in what can only be described as a positive month for the Ingolstadt make.
But there were more happy climbers coming from the Volkswagen mothership. The stylish Cupra Born jumped eight spots, to #11, while the Volkswagen ID.3 joined the table in #17. Still, despite joining the table in the last month, it wasn’t a good year for the German hatchback, especially when we remember that it was the best seller in this market in 2020 — since then, it has always been downhill (#13 in 2021 and #17 in 2022). It’s a similar story for the Volkswagen ID.4, dropping from 3rd in 2021 to 9th this year.
Finally, the Polestar 2 was up to #14 and the BMW i4 climbed two positions in December to #12, somewhat compensating the drop of the BMW iX3 to #20. With the
compliance SUV model dropping from 7th in 2021 to its current 20th position, and with the compact BMW iX1 starting to dip its toes in the market, the China-made EV from BMW has fulfilled its role of holding the make’s torch in the EV space in the time that the little i3 was starting to show its age and the new models were still ramping up. With the iX1, i4, and iX being the German brand star players for the 2023 season, the iX3 can now rest for longer on the substitutes bench.
Looking at size categories, the #19 Fiat 500e won the city car category for the second time in a row, with 1,884 registrations, a nice 81% increase year over year (YoY). The Peugeot e-208 has also won its second consecutive category title, this time with no competition in sight. In fact, the only two small EVs in this top 20 came from the Stellantis stable, in the form of the aforementioned Fiat 500e and Peugeot e-208.
In the midsize category, last year’s winner, the Ford Mustang Mach-E, was kicked out of the plugin top 20! The Tesla Model Y succeeded it, with Tesla’s midsizer removing the Kia EV6 from the midsize throne in the last stage of the race. As for the full size category, as always, the #14 Audi e-tron reigns supreme, and only the BMW iX seems able to give it a run for its money in 2023.
Top Auto Brands for Electric Vehicle Sales in the Netherlands — 2022
In the manufacturer ranking, Volvo (9.2%, down from 9.7%) hung onto the leadership position in December, winning its first automaker title — after three runner-up spots (2013, 2014, and 2021). Skoal, Volvo!
BMW (8.7%) also had reasons to celebrate, winning its second silver medal ever, and that was long after the one achieved in 2016. Will the Bavarian win its first gold in 2023?
As for last year’s winner, Kia, it ended 2022 in 3rd, with 8%, down 0.6% from the previous month. The Korean brand suffered from lower performance from its best seller, the Niro, which was #2 in 2021 but dropped to #5 in 2022. Better luck in 2023?
Off the podium, a lot has gone on in the last month of the year, with both Volkswagen (6.7%, up from 5.6% in the previous month) and Audi (6.5%, up from 5.4%) removing Peugeot (6.3%, down from 7%) and Skoda (5.4%, down 0.4%) from the top 5 while they rose to 4th and 5th, respectively. A sign of things to come?
Top Auto Groups for Electric Vehicle Sales in the Netherlands — 2022
In the OEM table, winner Volkswagen Group benefited from good performances from Audi, Volkswagen, and Cupra to gain 2.2% share and end the year with 22.6% share, making that its third win in a row. It seems the German conglomerate has this market well in hand, thanks to its multiple brand policy.
Geely–Volvo (16.7%, down 0.4%) reached the silver medal, with Lynk & Co and Polestar compensating for a slower than usual month from Volvo and allowing the OEM to steal the 2nd spot from Stellantis in the last stage of the race (15.5%, down 1.7% in December). With the melting pot conglomerate suffering from a horrible month, due to the fact that many of its EVs are in a transition to improved specs, it couldn’t profit from the end-of-year rush. Despite this, Stellantis can’t really complain, because its 3rd spot in 2022 was a good improvement over it 5th spot of 2021.
Off the podium, Hyundai–Kia (11.8%, down 0.9%) took the 4th spot in 2022, while BMW Group ended the year in 5th, with 10.7% (down from 10.9% in November).
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