Germany To Fall Well Short Of 1 Million Electric Car Goal By 2020

JAN 9 2016 BY MARK KANE 32

Plug-in electric car registrations in Germany – November 2015

Plug-in electric car registrations in Germany – November 2015

Road to 1 million run into obstacles

Road to 1 million runs into obstacles

A report from Bain & Company doesn’t believe in the German Federal Government’s goal of 1 million plug-in electric cars on the roads by 2020.  And we tend to agree.

The total number of plug-ins at the end of 2015 will be at approximately 50,000, instead of the expected 200,000.

In the last three years, sales amounted to over 40,000, while in 2015 over 20,000 were sold, but then again some registrations are phantom.

That means the next 950,000 must be sold in 5 years.

The lower than hoped for result are in part responsible from the lack of federal incentives, which were considered a few years ago, but didn’t live to see introduction.

For example, a €5,000 incentive (similar to France or UK) or a lower tax for EVs sure would easily shoot Germany to the largest EV market in Europe. The good news is that incentives are on the table again, as more German brands are offer more plug-in models for sale; perhaps the government figures it is time to support the home team now they are participating.

As in the case of any other market, plug-in electric car sales in Germany will also grow due to rapid improvements to the cars, cost reduction of the batteries, better charging infrastructure and more just the fact there are models to choose from everyday.

Source: Bain & Company via Green Car Congress

Categories: General


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32 Comments on "Germany To Fall Well Short Of 1 Million Electric Car Goal By 2020"

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There is already a Tax break for EVs in Germany which gives an advantage over ICE cars of approx 1200€ over 10 years.
Other than that only some regional incentives for company cars do exist.
Despite high growth rates for EVs recently, the 1 mio goal is out of reach because of the traditional carmakers big influence on politicians and their interest in protecting investments in large ICE manufacturing sites.

I believe the German manufacturing lobbying was to blame because they weren’t ready to be competitive. Now that we are seeing plug-in versions of there mainstream cars we may see a reversal.

“There is already a Tax break for EVs in Germany which gives an advantage over ICE cars of approx 1200€ over 10 years.”

But not if first-time registered after December 31st, 2015 -> only 5 years in the next 5 years. But in any case, there’s a general 50% discount.


This is why OPEC laughs at EVs. 🙁

Soon we will be able to laugh at OPEC.

Everybody is buying the economies of battery cars, making them cheaper for Germany. They’re the “Greece”, of EV economics.

Once cars will get good enough, sales will pick up rapidly. Until now there have only been the expensive Tesla and somewhat less expensive 80-milers. Now that Bolt is on the table with affordable 200 miles and the competition is picking up, EVs are going to be a lot more attractive and the sales will follow.

the majority of germans love speeding on their Autobahns!Mostly no speed limits!,at all !!!Avarage speed 130-150 miles/hour.Sadly they doesn,t seem to care at all about Co2 ,enviroment-(Umwelt )etc.(see VW!!!)The government supports massively only ICE(even the low environment standards…)The media mostly ridiculising and hostile against Tesla &.Lately some more objective presentations….(after VW scandal…)

1. There are many autobahn kilometers _with_ speed limit (IIRC ca. 1/3). 2. You weren’t on the autobahn in a typical rushhour. I’m often glad if I can drive 110km/h on the left lane. And when I got the chance to drive a car where >=200km/h isn’t really a problem, an average of 200km/h is far away because of many other much slower cars that are also on the left lane sometimes. 3. The percentage of people living in big cities is probably far less in Germany than in other countries. E.g. Austria, roughly 25% of the population lives in the capital… (and there’re also other big cities). 4. Renault gives a discount of 5kEUR on the Zoe without battery (no discount on the battery rent, no battery to buy), so it’s starting at ca. 16kEUR. But the battery rent is quite expensive. If you assume 5,5kEUR for the battery (->Leaf), in best case you can drive around for ca. 9 years – but only 5Mm/year… -> The main problem isn’t the speed limit. For most people I know 150km/h would be okay (they often had cars with 160km/h max (no electronical limit in the car!), which takes much time… Read more »

Useful information. Demographics matter, as do general public perceptions of evs and their applicability to your particular situation.

still Auto motor sport(Germany)and &,all ridiculized Tesla as a typical “Ami “car….in all respects…always pushed the S MODELL to max (as “usual”)speed and declared that range is almost nil=120-150km,and the car is a luxury matchbox toy…..(“teuere Spielkiste”). It gave a very bad European reputation to Tesla (except Scandinavia)….since the rest of Europe admires the german car industry,their Media ,as “most reliable” source with ADAC etc.(since VW,some change of tone)

And? Actually no real difference to what they say like about French cars. You’re reading the wrong magazine.


This is TRUE:they lost common sense,objectivity,independent media,responsible technical controll(TUV…,VW “clean diesel…scandal)YES,we read most of the german(auto)papers…ADAC,Wirtschaftswoche,Faz,Die Zeit,Die Welt….usw. The new(old)German media style is impressing,and worrisome. I prefer much more the british or US.,even French opinions! (there is open debate,serious research…!)

Q@Andre, you don’t actually live in Germany, do you? Quoting speed in mph is a dead giveaway. As notting points out above, there is far more to it than you suggest.

A couple summers ago, on a visit to Germany I was taken on a road trip that included several hours on the autobahn. There was a lot of road work going on and I was surprised by how little of the distance was on stretches with no speed limit.

sorry,i lived just 10 years in Germany,Austria and still returning yearly twice……there is speeding allover in Europe,even in poor Hungary,not speaking about Austria or Italy…(they don,t honk though,but prefer their powerful headlights….)and push you aside…….not always politely.

also very poor,disorganized,non functional charging network!!(no government priority )Also closing all nuclear reactors,replacing them with the most polluting coal generators…same in Poland.Verbally green,practically quiet different…..

On the other side most German houses have 3 phase electricity.

Coal is definitely a problem, but last year about one third of electricity was already produced by wind solar hydro and biomass.

What is happening here is that ice and coal lobby is extremely tight with politicians. They do all they can to hinder investment in private solar…

Some years ago there was a massive financial support of private solar! But now where the Chinese moduls flooded the German market, most of the money would go to China instead staying in Europe…

And BTW: In Germany you have to heat your house with a certain percentage of renewable energy. Solar is one possibility. Others are e.g. using domestic gas/oil with a certain renewable energy percentage.


Yes this financial support was one of the reasons why private solar grew a lot in the beginning… However solar reduces peak price which ate massively into the profits of rwe and the others… Now the electricity has negative prices for app. One percent of the year… Politicians now try everything to hinder further installation… Just look at the laws they introduced over the last five years. Nowadays it’s really hard to comply with all the rules, while at the same time in the Netherlands its allowed to just plug in micro converters… The ones who profit the most are those industries who don’t have to pay the fee which means the energy intense industries…

And don’t forget that Germany has a really high supercharger density if not the highest…

Thanks Tesla!

… and a very low Tesla service center density compared to VW/Audi, Renault, etc. (so extra fee of >=100EUR each time).
Maybe Tesla Model 3 owners won’t be allowed to use them? Nobody knows.


Maybe VW/Audi goes out of business? Nobody Knows?

Maybe Tesla owners don’t need to visit service centers as often as VW/Audi Renault owners?

The Model S has to visit the garage more often and is much more expensive than my Renault with 1.6 16V and even without Ranger service and with the same interval. The intervals are 1 year/20Mm vs. 2 years/30Mm.
Tesla wants in best case 2,2kEUR for 4 times = 550EUR/piece. For my Renault, each time costs between 300 and 500EUR (incl. rented car for that time, in average probably 400EUR – ok, windscreen wipers cost ca. 12EUR/year on the internet and replaced by myself). The first time something has to be replaced at the brakes or the synchronous belt was far after 4 years/80Mm.


According to Tony Sena, by 2018 there should be a competitive, mid size (Camry/Passat/Accord) vehicle on the market. As long as the battery industry can supply the batteries, these cats should very quickly start to outsell ICEs.The Chevy Bolt is actually ahead of his projections so while it might be unlikely that Germany meets this target, I wouldn’t rule it out completely.

Market disruptions can happen very quickly but in this case I believe production will be constrained by the availability of bayteries, as I believe is the current situation. If there are enough batteries being produced, it might actually happen.

The German government’s premature rush to “green” tech shows an abandonment of practicality in favor of wishful thinking:

1. Shutting down their commercial nuclear power reactors

2. Promoting solar power to the point that even farmers install “solar farms” in place of growing crops

3. Skyrocketing electricity rates, primarily due to #1 and #2

4. A foolish pursuit of trying to use hydrogen for short-term grid power storage, which is every bit as insane and unworkable as using hydrogen to power “fool cell” cars

I’m all for promoting “green” power generation, but let’s not forget that nuclear power generates no CO2 at all, and is very clean compared to most grid power sources. There may come a day when it makes sense to abandon nuclear power in favor of solar or tidal or geothermal energy, but until that day comes, shutting down nuclear power plants just creates more demand for fossil fuel burning power plants.

And let’s not get so far ahead of ourselves in subsidizing solar power that we pay people to build out more than can actually be used.

Pffft. They are not installing solar PV instead of growing crops. That’s silly. They’ve been (wisely) lowering their solar PV incentives since the costs have dropped.

The shutting down of nukes is stupid, so I agree with that.

But the main reason their electricity is so expensive for residences is that:
1) They invested really heavily in solar PV and wind before they became cheap. So they have big loans to pay back. Of course the entire world should thank Germany for investing big time so early such that they helped drive down the prices to the low levels that exist now.
2) They give their industries low subsidized rates by making their residential customers pay high rates. This protects their businesses despite the Energiewende.

notting said:

“…and a very low Tesla service center density compared to VW/Audi, Renault, etc. (so extra fee of >=100EUR each time).
Maybe Tesla Model 3 owners won’t be allowed to use them? Nobody knows.”

Is this just ignorance, or is it intentional FUD?

I rather imagine that if Tesla had as many cars on the roads in Germany as those other auto makers, then they’d have as many service centers, too. As it is, with only a small fraction of the total cars, it’s hardly surprising there aren’t nearly as many service centers.

And it has been widely reported, repeatedly, that Elon Musk has said the Model ≡ will have unlimited Supercharger access, just like the Model S. He’s said it, or tweeted it, more than once.

But they have 1 million new immigrants.

From a financial pov the immigrants are a huge investment program into infra structure – above 20 billion euro in 2016 – something which would not happen w/o them as MR Schaeuble would have limited govt spend to protect his goal of a balanced budget

If I read correctly, EV doesn’t mean BEV regarding the magic million.
1 million PHEV will be easily attained, likely well surpassed, with EV operation being required in all population centers.
100km AER (NEDC, aka 50-ish real world) will be standard by 2018.
or.. I could be wrong, but Germany does seem to want to electrify.
DO wish that they hadn’t shut down their nukes, but politics is politics, and the anti-nuke party is definitely loud there.

1 million of PHEV would mean there need to be one PHEV of every model for sale by tomorrow. It is simply not accievable. Germany has 3 million cars/year sold. To get to 1 million in 5 years you need around 200.000 PHEV sold/year. So around 15% market share starting this year, with last year hanging between 0.7% and 1% (PHEV+BEV combined).

Ok, going to 10 in 2016 to 20% market share in 2020 would still be sufficient, but this is also not realistic…

Btw, dec is out and we reached ~1.3% market share. 🙂