VW Reclaims Top EV Seller Spot in Germany from Tesla

Volkswagen has finally surpassed U.S. electric car maker Tesla in electric vehicle sales and reclaimed its spot as the number one EV seller in its home market in Germany. Recent sales figures show that the German automaker cumulatively sold more electric cars than Tesla in the first seven months of 2023.

VW registered 41.475 battery electric cars in the first one-half of the year while Tesla registered 40,289 fully electric cars in the German market. However, Tesla reigned over the German market for most of the year, data from the country’s Federal Motor Transport Authority (KBA) shows, and VW just edged past the U.S. automaker in the year’s seventh month.

Aside from Volkswagen, German automakers Mercedes and Audi took the third and fourth spots at 20,613 and 16,786 registrations followed by BMW and South Korean carmaker Hyundai at 15,987, and 15,411 registrations. Automakers in the German market registered a total of 268,926 new electric vehicles from January 2023 to the end of July.

Several governments in Europe have pledged to replace fossil fuel-powered cars over the next few decades to cut down their carbon emissions and aid in global efforts to combat climate change. The electric vehicle industry is still in its infancy, and EVs still make up quite a small percentage of total vehicle sales.

High electric vehicle prices and insufficient public electric vehicle charging infrastructure have been significant barriers to EV adoption in most markets. Data from the German VDA Industry Association shows that while overall vehicle sales are still far lower than their pre-COVID levels, German automakers such as BMW and Volkswagen sold 20% more vehicles in the first seven months of the year compared to the same period in 2022.

The coronavirus pandemic slowed down commerce in most European Union countries as governments issued lockdown orders to slow the spread of the disease, ultimately reducing vehicle purchases among consumers. Major supply chain issues such as the global semiconductor shortage drastically slowed production and forced several automakers to either reduce or halt the manufacture of new units.

Electric vehicle sales have gone up in the meantime, increasing overall vehicle sales by close to 70% year-over-year in July and accounting for 20% of all vehicle registrations. A significant portion of these sales are due to government subsidies meant to decrease the cost of EVs and make them more affordable. Experts warn that electric vehicle sales may slow down once the subsidies and incentives for fleets run out.

While attention may be focused on how the major companies such as Tesla and VW are performing in EV different markets, smaller startups such as Workhorse Group Inc. (NASDAQ: WKHS) shouldn’t be ruled out of the game as they too are inching their way into different consumer segments.

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