First BMW i3s Registered in Germany; Nissan LEAF Sales Hit 666 YTD


BMW i3

BMW i3

These Are Too Expensive to Produce, Says a GM Exec

These Are Too Expensive to Produce, Says a GM Exec

August was another strong month for pure EVs in Germany, but the plug-in hybrid Opel Ampera, with just 20 registrations (261 YTD), fell off from the leaders.

In the fully electric segment, we see the Nissan LEAF with 147 registrations in August, which led to 666 for the year.  Triple sixes…Is this a sign?

Renault ZOE was behind the LEAF with 110 registrations in Germany in August, bringing its YTD total to 651.

BMW is preparing a fleet of newcomer i3 by registering another 77 in August (likely for dealer demo vehicles), before they will go on sale in November.

Smart doesn’t provide sales data for its Fortwo Electric Drive in Germany, but we believe it to be the front-runner in the plug-in segment.

Mitsubishi and Peugeot sold only 9 i-MiEVs and iOns in total.

The market share for EVs in Germany should be at roughly 0.2% in August.  Total passenger vehicle sales were just over 214,000.

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19 responses to "First BMW i3s Registered in Germany; Nissan LEAF Sales Hit 666 YTD"
  1. Kimmi says:

    Yep, EV Share there is 0,198%, exactly the share that it had in the end of 2012.

    1. Mark Kane says:

      Any data on smart Kimmi?

      1. Suprise Cat says:

        Data will be available next week, but it will be a low number, because the Smart plant in Hambach was shut down for 6 weeks to undergo modernisation.

  2. Kimmi says:

    I have confirmed data until June (981 units), my estimate until the end of August is 1.181 units, so the Smart ED is #1 in Germany by far.

    1. Spec says:

      “so the Smart ED is #1 in Germany by far.” . . . So Germans tend to be a bit Nationalistic. Shocking. 😉

  3. Roy_H says:

    So who was the GM exec who said the Opel Ampera was “too expensive to produce”?
    What is the price of the Ampera in Germany vs other similar size cars? Does it qualify for incentives?

    1. Priusmaniac says:

      That is a good one. They make a costly double motorization vehicle with double wheel access for the engine trough a clutch and gear box and for the motor instead of a simple serial system and then they dare say it cost too much!

  4. Chris O says:

    So basically nobody cares about EVs in Germany. I wonder if Model S will change that. So far it had a a real shock and awe effect on elements of the German press that wondered how their own car industry got caught with their pants down by some American upstart.

    1. Spec says:

      I don’t believe there are any incentives to buy EVs in Germany. And the fact that there are no German EVs besides the Smart ED (which is actually built in France) probably limits interest.

      I suspect that plug-in sales in Germany will increase once there are some incentives and/or some German plug-ins available.

  5. krona2k says:

    Strange that such a green country has such poor EV sales. It probably is the case that cheaper domestically produced cars will improve sales in Germany. They might be a bit late to the game but they’ll probably do well in the end.

    1. Aaron says:

      High electricity prices are partially to blame.

      1. Trace says:

        And an extensive, robust public transportation system. Most Germans don’t need a car at all.

      2. Transportation for the future says:

        Aaron wrote: “High electricity prices are partially to blame.”

        Not really. Just as electricity costs multiple times as much as it does in the US, gasoline and diesel also costs multiple times as much as it does in the US. One can still save on energy costs by driving electric. Especially as the electricity can still be obtained for free from many public charging stations. Electricity prices probably are not even among the reasons normally cited as reasons against electric cars. There are many surveys about this. Main concerns so far were: purchase price (as there are virtually no financial or tax incentives by the state), short range, no offerings by german manufacturers yet besides the electric Smart (about to change), lack of a place to charge for apartment dwellers in the cities and – funnily enough – top speed. As many people in Germany are used to driving 160km/h (=100mph) or even 200km/h (=125mph) on German highways, the top speed of 150km/h (BMW i3), 145km/h (Nissan Leaf), 135km/h (Renault Zoe) or 130km/h (e-up!) might seem relatively low to these people, and then in addition of course the range melts like ice cream in the sun when cruising at these speeds.

    2. Darius says:

      Germany is fake green country. They have bigger portion of coal power generation than US and they shuting down nuclear and replacing with coal. New coal 2000 MW power plant comissioned recently. On contrary US decomissioning 15 000 MW power generation.

      1. Transportation for the future says:

        “Germany is fake green country” – this seems laughable. Most will agree that Germany is one of the greenest countries in the world.

        “They have bigger portion of coal power generation than US” – actually, coal power generation is in a similar percentage range. According to the Energy Information Administration, in 2010 coal provided 41.9% of the annual production in the US. According to the Bundesministerium fuer Umwelt, Naturschutz und Reaktorsicherheit (Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety), in 2010 coal provided 41.5% of the annual production in Germany.

        “they shuting down nuclear”
        As nuclear power has safety risks (example of power plant Fukushima built after an American design) and there is no solution yet on where and how to safely store the nuclear waste that is still going to dangerously radiate for millions of years, phasing out nuclear power is the poster child of being green.

        “New coal 2000 MW power plant comissioned recently. On contrary US decomissioning 15 000 MW power generation.” – Misleading. In Germany, share of coal power declined from 50.5% in 2000 to 41.5% in 2010. Just as share of coal power declined in the US from 51.3% in 2000 to 41.9% in 2010. And while very few new coal power plants will still be added to the grid, because the construction of them started before the massive boom of renewables in Germany, a lot of them will be taken off of the grid. Just 2 weeks ago, the news broke that utilities plan to close down 11 fossil fuel power plants (most of them probably coal), as there is no need for them anymore as so much renewable energy is coming into the grid. See here:
        So it’s not like replacing coal with another fossil fuel (like in the US, with natural gas, with all the environmental problems that come along with fracking), but with renewables instead.

        This is reflected in the share of renewables:
        In the US, 11.06% in 1998, then slowly down to 8.82% in 2005, then slowly up to 12.52% in 2011.
        In Germany, 4.7% in 1998, up to 10.1% in 2005, up to 22.9% in 2012.

        That Germany has more than 4 times the renewable energy it had 15 years ago is largely because of the Erneuerbare-Energien-Gesetz (EEG, renewable energies law), a piece of legislation so successful that afterwards a similar law has been established by numerous countries. The growth of photovoltaic solar and wind in Germany is just another example of how green of a country it is.

        There would be many more examples, just one important one: Most of the people are very environmental. Of course there are also some representatives of the “Poison the land around me, pollute my air, I don’t care if I get sick or die from it either, just don’t take away any of my money” mindset. But not as many as in the US.
        The most important thing is that this is also reflected in politics.

        Germany’s third largest state by population, Baden-Wuerttemberg, is governed by a green governor (or prime minister, as they are called in Germany). Any US state with a green governor? Nope. Germany’s sixth largest city, Stuttgart, ironically also home of some of the most polluting car manufacturers like Mercedes and Porsche, has a green mayor, like many other German cities do as well. Any US city with a mayor that belongs to the green party? None that I know of. In the last German national election in 2009, the green party got 10.7% of the popular vote. In the meantime, polls saw them ending up even higher. It remains to be seen how much they’ll get in 2 weeks, but it’s safe to assume they won’t be below 10%. Oh, and how much of the popular vote did Green Party candidate Jill Stein receive last November? Oh yes, it was 0.36%. It turns out some countries indeed are more green than others.

  6. Roy_H says:

    IIRC the German government is gung-ho on fuel cell cars and plans to build the first national hydrogen distribution network. I read that some promoters in England were trying to get England to follow suit else they get “left behind”. I hope other countries take a more prudent “wait and see” attitude, as I believe there will be an initial flurry of success up to about 2020, then dismal failure as the battery EV market takes over. This prediction is based on my belief that many up-scale buyers will jump on the FCV bandwagon sold on the quick fueling and not too concerned about the higher price. And of course initially the government will subsidize the hydrogen fuel price. But it will always cost more to produce and distribute hydrogen than electricity, and eventually this will lead to hydrogen’s downfall.

    1. Transportation for the future says:

      Roy_H does not recall correctly. The German government is not “gung-ho” on fuel cell cars.