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Romania takes lead in EV registration growth

ABB charging station, Bulgaria.

ACEA figures show a jump in EV registrations for nascent markets like Bulgaria and Romania, while EVs made up 1.7% of overall vehicle volumes

The European Automobile Manufacturers Association’s (ACEA) 2018 first quarter car registration statistics have just been published, and despite petrol ICEs unsurprisingly responsible for the bulk of sales across the EU, some surprising EV sales growth also turned heads.

Romania recorded the highest growth rate of EV registrations among EU member states so far, with a 1,673% (almost 18 times) increase on Q1 2017. Although this is the result of a very low base, Romania saw battery EV sales rocket from 11 in Q1 2017 to 195 in Q1 2018 (the country does not post separate statistics for PHEVs).

Overall, petrol vehicles accounted for 55% of registrations in the EU, and close to 50% in Romania.

Of the 28,627 vehicles registered in Romania during the quarter, 14,124 were petrol (49.3%), 13,366 diesel (46.7%). There were also healthy sales of mild hybrids – 765 were registered in Romania in January-March 2018, up 95% compared with the first quarter of 2017 – and 177 alternatively-powered vehicles (such as CNG) a reduction of 8.8%.

Bulgaria too is also showing increased interest in the technology, rising to 48 EV registrations in Q1 2018 from zero in the same period last year.

ACEA data show that Romania is the 18th largest market among the 28 EU member states for alternatively‐powered vehicles and ranked 17th for EVs.

Across all of Europe, Norway continued to lead in terms of overall registration volumes with 9,694, followed by Germany (9,127) France (7,322), the Netherlands (3,945) and the UK (3,895). Notably, Germany’s year-on-year growth was an impressive 80% for this period, and from a much higher base of 5,064 in 2017, suggesting the technology is beginning to take a firm hold in the country.

These figures also extend trends seen throughout 2017. In its end of year report, the ACEA noted that registrations of battery EVs and hybrids accounted for the strongest growth rates that year –54.8% and 43.3%, respectively – while EVs and PHEVs made up 1.9% of all sales across the bloc.

ACEA Q1 2018


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