There hasn't been much good news from the German car market over the past three years, but the situation seems to be stabilizing slowly. With an increase of more than 18 percent in July, there was a double-digit increase in new registrations for the fifth time in a row. With more than 243,000 registrations, the market is now around 80 percent in relation to the pre-Corona years 2016 to 2019. Fleet customers are particularly responsible for the increase. They recorded an impressive 32 percent increase in July. This trend is likely to continue in August as the subsidy for commercial customers ends in September. Models with electric drives are currently particularly popular with fleet customers, as evidenced by growth of 130 percent. The purely electric models now have a sales share of almost a quarter.
On the other hand, there are no major changes in the German market among private customers. It is true that this too recorded growth for the fifth month in a row; however, this was significantly lower in the single-digit range than in the fleet business. The share of private customers shrank to less than a third of the total market in July. In the past year as a whole, the share was at least 36 percent. The proportion of models with electric drive recorded an increase of a narrow seven percent compared to the same period in 2022. Inexpensive petrol engines are currently particularly popular with a market share of more than 50 percent. In 2022 it was an average of 44 percent. The plug-in hybrids, which lost 62 percent without the expired subsidy among private customers, are particularly under pressure; with the rental companies it was even 68 percent.
While car manufacturers' own registrations are still low due to the continuing tense delivery situation and corresponding backlogs, especially for electrified vehicles, German car dealers are increasingly starting to register more vehicles in order to later push them onto the market with higher discounts. This should overcome the unchanged reluctance to buy among private customers. Car rental companies are slowly playing a larger role in registrations again – there was an increase of 26 percent.
The situation is very similar in many other European countries. While demand on the private market remained low in the top five European nations such as Germany, Spain, France and the United Kingdom, things are very different in Switzerland. The electrified models are particularly popular. According to Dataforce analysts, demand for electric cars rose by 66 percent, hybrids by 40 percent and plug-in hybrids by more than 35 percent. As in other markets, diesel fell by more than eight percent, while demand for petrol engines remained almost unchanged. Best-selling car in Switzerland: the Tesla Model Y.
The Netherlands is currently one of the fastest growing markets in Europe. With an increase of almost 31 percent and 28,687 new registrations, this was the sixth month of growth in a row. Similar to Germany, the growth comes primarily from the fleets (57.7 percent) as well as dealers and manufacturers (37.2 percent). Particularly popular: electric cars and plug-in hybrids with growth of 136 and 121 percent. In the Netherlands, too, private customers are very reluctant to buy. A similar picture in the UK. In July there was a 28.3 percent increase in registrations in the Brexit state - primarily driven by rental companies, fleets and dealers / manufacturers. Particularly popular with fleet customers, as in Germany: electric cars with an increase of almost 150 percent.