New car registrations: +9.2% in September; battery electric 14.8% market share

In September 2023, new car registrations increased by 9.2%, reaching 861,062 units, marking the EU car market’s fourteenth consecutive month of growth. Two of the EU’s largest markets saw substantial gains; Italy (+22.7%) and France (+10.7%). Germany’s market was relatively steady, with a tiny 0.1% drop compared to September 2022.

In the first three quarters of 2023, the EU car market grew substantially (+16.9%), totalling eight million registered units. Despite the year-to-date increase, the market remains 20% below the pre-COVID pandemic level of 10 million units in 2019. Except for Hungary (-3.2%), all of the region’s markets recorded gains during these nine months, including the four largest: Italy (+20.5%), Spain (+18.5%), France (+15.9%), and Germany (+14.5%).

New EU car registrations by power source

In September, the battery-electric car market share reached 14.8%, marking an increase from 14.1% in September the previous year. This was the third time this year that battery-electric cars surpassed diesel, making them the third-most-popular choice for new car buyers. Hybrid-electric cars retained their position as the second most-preferred option, accounting for a significant 27.3% of the market. Although petrol cars are still buyers’ top choice, their market share fell from 35.3% in September 2022 to 34.1% this year.

Electric cars

In September 2023, EU battery-electric car registrations increased by 14.3%, reaching 127,149 units, or 14.8% of the market. Germany, the largest market, declined by a significant 28.6%, which may be linked to incentives for private buyers being reduced from September. However, notably positive performances in three other EU markets – the Netherlands (+70.8%), Sweden (+60.7%), and France (+34.2%) – offset Germany’s decline.

In September, new EU hybrid-electric car registrations increased by 30.5%, primarily driven by robust growth in the bloc’s three largest markets: Germany (+44.1%), Italy (+34.8%), and France (+30.2%). This resulted in a cumulative 28.8% increase, with nearly 2 million units sold in the first three-quarters of the year – around a quarter of the market.

Last month, new EU plug-in hybrid car registrations were relatively stable (+0.4%), totalling 70,578 units. Strong performance in major markets such as France (+35.1%) and Belgium (+71.4%) helped offset Germany’s decline (-45.7%), the largest market for this power source. Overall, the market share of plug-in hybrid cars decreased from 8.9% to 8.2% in September this year.

Petrol and diesel cars

In September 2023, the EU petrol car market increased by 5.5%, although its market share decreased from 35.3% to 34.1% compared to September last year. Sales growth in the largest bloc’s markets – Italy (+32.2 %), Germany (+9.1%), Spain (+3.2%), and France (+1.4%) – largely contributed to this result.

The EU’s diesel car market continued to decline in September (-12.5%), despite growth in Germany (+4.6%), as sales in most of the bloc’s other markets retracted. Diesel cars now have a market share of 12.7%, down from 15.9% in September of the previous year.

In September, the battery-electric car market share reached 14.8% – the third time this year that battery-electric cars surpassed diesel.


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About ACEA

  • The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) represents the 15 major Europe-based car, van, truck and bus makers: BMW Group, DAF Trucks, Daimler Truck, Ferrari, Ford of Europe, Honda Motor Europe, Hyundai Motor Europe, Iveco Group, JLR, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Renault Group, Toyota Motor Europe, Volkswagen Group, and Volvo Group
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About the EU automobile industry

  • 12.9 million Europeans work in the automotive sector
  • 8.3% of all manufacturing jobs in the EU
  • €392.2 billion in tax revenue for European governments
  • €101.9 billion trade surplus for the European Union
  • Over 7% of EU GDP generated by the auto industry
  • €59.1 billion in R&D spending annually, 31% of EU total
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