Pure electric cars are still just 1.8 percent of the total French market.

The third-generation Renault Zoe is pretty much the same car presented in 2012 with aesthetic, power, and range improvements. Even the dimensions are the same. But that does not put off French buyers of wanting one EV. In fact, 46 percent more of them have decided to purchase a pure electric vehicle in the first half of 2019.

Although the 21,006 EVs sold in France in these first six months account for just 1.8 percent of the total new car market in France, the fact that total sales declined also 1.8 percent, with 1,166,443 units, shows how the push towards electric mobility is getting stronger there.

“2019 will be for record-breaking. After close to 4,500 EVs sold in June and an increase of 46 percent in the first semester, the market pursues its ascending trajectory. The new models and the evolution of the ADVENIR program for the financing of home rechargers are positive signs which will accelerate the development of electric mobility in France”, said Cécile Goubet, general secretary of Avere-France, the French association for the development of electric mobility.

In June, sales were concentrated on three vehicles: the Renault Zoe, with 41 percent of sales, the Tesla Model 3 and the Nissan Leaf. Although it has an impressive lead, the Zoe had a bigger share in June 2018, accounting for 61 percent of all EVs sold in France in that month.

2019 Renault ZOE

Regarding other forms of electric mobility, PHEVs have had a 20 percent increase in sales in the first half of 2019. Hybrids represent 4.96 percent of all cars sold in France in the same period, of which only 0.68 percent are plug-in hybrid cars.

France is currently in love with ethanol, with flex-fuel cars for sale as an alternative to electrification. Even hybrid cars have been converted to use ethanol or gas there. 

Brazil already uses ethanol, extracted from sugar cane, in all of the country, which leads many specialists there to say electrification is not necessary for that market. Do you agree with this? Or are renewable fuels just a way to postpone the inevitable end of combustion engines?

Gallery: 2019 Renault ZOE