...which allowed the automaker to meet the European CO2 targets for passenger cars in 2020.

Mercedes-Benz announced that its global plug-in electric car sales more than tripled in 2020 and that the PHEV and BEV expansion will continue in 2021.

According to the preliminary data, thanks to the Q4 rush, the results turned out to be good enough to meet the European CO2 targets for passenger cars and thus avoid any fines.

Mercedes-Benz Cars

The total sales of Mercedes-Benz Cars (Mercedes-Benz and smart brands) decreased by 10.3% year-over-year to 2,202,578.

During the period, the plug-in electric car sales (BEVs and PHEVs) exceeded 160,000, taking about 7.4% of the overall volume! We can estimate that it was around 162,990.

The volume is more than three times (up 228.8%) higher than in 2019, which also means that in 2019 some 49,570 plug-in cars were sold. At the time it was close to 2% of the overall volume.

An interesting thing is that most of the plug-ins (around 87,000) were sold during the fourth quarter of 2020. This is very telling of how hot a period it was to capitalize on incentives and deliver as many plug-ins as possible to avoid CO2 fines.

Ola Källenius, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG said:

“We more than tripled sales of our plug-in hybrids and all-electric cars. Demand for these vehicles increased sharply, especially towards the end of the year. Our internal forecasts for 2020 indicate that we will have achieved the European CO2 targets for passenger cars last year. We will continue to push forward with our ’Electric first’ strategy and the further expansion of our electric model initiative. Based on our current knowledge, we expect to meet the CO2 targets in Europe again in 2021,”.

In 2021, the company intends to significantly increase plug-in electric car sales of the Mercedes-Benz Cars division to reach a plug-in share of 13%.

To make it happen, Mercedes-Benz will launch four new electric cars: EQA, EQB, EQE and EQS, and renew the plug-in hybrid family with electrified derivatives of the new C-Class and the S-Class.

Mercedes-Benz brand sales

Mercedes-Benz car sales in 2020 amounted to 2,164,187 (down 7.5% year-over-year). Plug-ins noted roughly 136,000 (a brief estimate) - mostly plug-in hybrids:

  • PHEVs: more than 115,000 (almost quadrupled year-over-year)
  • BEVs: roughly 21,000, including:
    close to 20,000 EQC
    about 1,700 EQV
  • Total: about 136,000 or 6.2% of total

"Sales of plug-in hybrids almost quadrupled to more than 115,000 units. Approximately 20,000 EQC were handed over to customers worldwide. The EQV achieved sales of about 1,700 vehicles."

Mercedes-Benz EQC
Mercedes-Benz EQC
Mercedes-Benz EQV (2020) in test
Mercedes-Benz EQV (2020)

smart brand sales

The smart brand sold 38,391 cars, noting a huge collapse - down 67.1% year-over-year. On the positive side, some 27,000 electric smarts were sold (up 45.6% year-over-year), compared to 18,400 in 2019.

In other words, electric smart sales account for roughly 70% of the total volume.

"The largest market for smart was Germany: There, strong demand for all-electric models was significantly boosted by the German government subsidy, which led to doubled electric smart deliveries (+104.9%)."

2020 smart EQ fortwo (Coupé)
2020 smart EQ fortwo (Coupé)
2020 smart EQ forfour
2020 smart EQ forfour

Mercedes-Benz Vans sales

Finally, the sales results forof the Mercedes-Benz Vans (commerical models) in 2020. Overall result is 325,771 (down 8.9%).

Out of that, almost 6,200 (more than tripled year-over-year) fall on electric vans: eVito and eSprinter. That's close to 1.9% of the total volume.

"At the same time, the launch of the eVito in additional markets and the market launch of the eSprinter more than tripled sales of electric vehicles."

Marcus Breitschwerdt, Head of Mercedes-Benz Vans said:

“We are entering the new year with confidence, as we achieved very strong sales figures in the last two quarters. However, due to the global pandemic and numerous lockdowns, we saw a decrease in sales of our vans. Our electric vans are making a positive contribution to unit sales. We delivered a total of almost 6,200 electric vans worldwide. In Europe, we are the market leader in the segments of electric mid-size and large vans, each with a market share of more than one third,”.

2018 Mercedes eVito
Mercedes eVito
Mercedes-Benz eSprinter
Mercedes-Benz eSprinter

Detailed results:

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