Alternative fuel vehicle registrations: +35.1% in fourth quarter; +39.7% in 2017

Brussels, 1 February 2018 – In the fourth quarter of 2017, demand for alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) in the European Union continued to grow – EU results were 35.1% higher than in the same period in 2016. The 227,378 alternatively-powered cars registered during the last quarter of 2017 accounted for 6.7% of total passenger car sales, while electrically-chargeable vehicles (ECVs) made up for 1.9% of all cars sold across the European Union.

Registrations of battery electric (54.8%) and hybrid electric cars (43.3%) accounted for the strongest growth. Demand for plug-in hybrid cars continued to grow (+15.0%), albeit at a more moderate pace than in previous quarters. The EU market for LPG and NGV vehicles also ended the year strongly, with demand increasing by 27.3% in the last quarter of 2017.

Compared to one year ago AFV sales almost doubled in Spain (+90.8%), followed by Germany (+76.8%), the United Kingdom (+35.6%), France (+33.4%) and Italy (+30.7%) – the latter benefiting from recovering demand for LPG-fuelled cars, as in previous quarters.

Overall in 2017, 852,933 alternative fuel vehicles were registered in the European Union, up 39.7% compared to 2016. The uplift was mainly driven by the hybrid electric segment (+54.8%), followed electrically-chargeable vehicles (+39.0%) and other alternative fuels (+16.4%) that returned to growth after losing ground in 2016. When looking at their market share, alternative fuel vehicles still only play a minor role in the European Union. Alternatively‐powered cars accounted for 5.7% of the EU market in 2017, with electrically‐chargeable vehicles constituting 1.4% of total passenger car sales last year.


About ACEA

  • The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) represents the 16 major Europe-based car, van, truck and bus makers: BMW Group, DAF Trucks, Daimler, Daimler Truck, Ferrari, Ford of Europe, Honda Motor Europe, Hyundai Motor Europe, Iveco Group, Jaguar Land Rover, Renault Group, Stellantis, Toyota Motor Europe, Volkswagen Group, Volvo Cars, and Volvo Group.
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About the EU automobile industry

  • 12.6 million Europeans work in the auto industry (directly and indirectly), accounting for 6.6% of all EU jobs.
  • 11.6% of EU manufacturing jobs – some 3.5 million – are in the automotive sector.
  • Motor vehicles are responsible for €398.4 billion of tax revenue for governments across key European markets.
  • The automobile industry generates a trade surplus of €76.3 billion for the EU.
  • The turnover generated by the auto industry represents more than 8% of the EU’s GDP.
  • Investing €62 billion in R&D annually, the automotive sector is Europe’s largest private contributor to innovation, accounting for 33% of total EU spending.
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