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France Plug-in Volumes 2015 and YTD February 2016

France reached over 1 % plug-in share for 2015, 1,16 % of passenger cars & light commercials to be precise. An important milestone and place 8 in plug-in share among the over 40 markets we are tracking. Growth over 2014 was 68 % and 26 550 Plug-ins were sold in total. The increase was below the 99 % rate for total Europe, but was still an encouraging departure from the sluggish development of 2014 (just 10 % growth) and 2013 (25 % growth), despite generous tax incentives.

In 2015, France introduced an additional grant, a Super-bonus for low-carbon vehicles sales in the most air-polluted communities. This, plus a number of new and improved models created more enthusiasm among buyers. Also the total market developed favorable, with 2 295 000 passenger cars and LCVs sold, a 6 % increase over 2014.

January and February 2016 showed no signs of slowdown, plug-in volumes and shares are 90 % higher year-on-year, promising another good year for plug-in sales in France. The outlook for 2016 is further down in this article.

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Pure EVs dominate the French plug-in mix

More than in other markets, the BEV share held up well against the spree of new plug-in hybrids introduced in 2015. The share of pure EVs still nearly 80 %; lower than 2014, but still among the world's highest. Incentives from the French "Bonus-Malus" taxation regime favor vehicles with up to 20 g CO2/km, which receive up to 6300 € tax return. Vehicles from 21 g to 60 g (most plug-in hybrids) receive up to 4000 €.

Also the aforementioned Super-bonus for low-carbon vehicles is higher for BEVs: 3700 € vs 2500 € for plug-in hybrids. We expect the 80-20 split of BEV to PHEV to be maintained during 2016.

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Dominating sales of Zoe in France

The Zoe dominates plug-in sales in France and France is Zoe's largest markets, by far. Out of the 18 700 unit volume in 2015, 57 % stayed in the country. U.K., Norway and Germany together make half of that (29 %) and the other 14 markets in contribute with the remaining 14 %.

Zoe's shares among BEVs vary a lot, from 49 % in France, to (strangely) just 2 % in Belgium. In general, shares are higher in Southern Europe and lowest in Scandinavia.

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