Graphic charts global vehicle sales for combustion engine and electric vehicles.
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Future looks bright for European electric vehicles

By Ninian Carter

September 11, 2020 - While global automobile sales plunged by millions of units in the first half of the year, electric vehicle sales in Europe are up more than 45%.

The first half of this year saw global automobile sales plunge because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Quarterly vehicle sales reached a high in Q4 2016 of 22.7 million. In Q2 2020 sales were 14.4 million – around two-thirds of what they were at their peak.

When viewed year-on-year, sales tumbled further this year than during the global financial crisis when sales in Q4 2008 were down 21.1% from the previous year – in Q1 2020, they were down 25.3%.

Electric vehicles account for only 4.8% of total global vehicle sales, selling mainly in China, Europe and North America. Although their sales have fallen overall, they have generally performed better than combustion engine vehicles.

In Europe, however, growth has been spectacular, seeing a rise of 45.6% in the 16 major markets there.

Sales exceeded market expectations, fuelled by a combination of new stimulus programmes, new model launches and automakers pushing to hit carbon dioxide emissions targets.

The overall picture is one of electric vehicles driving global growth for years to come.

PUBLISHED: 11/09/2020; STORY: Graphic News; PICTURES: Renault
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