World Top 20 December 2016 (Updated)
Looking at December Best Selling manufacturers, Tesla did another record performance, with 13.927 units, a new all-time high, leaving the remaining podium bearers miles behind, as the Second Placed BYD registered 8.444 units (Down 23% YoY...What gives BYD?) and BMW did a personal best of 7.852 units.
Is this Leaf with a different nose-job, the 40 kWh version? Nope, this is the Venucia e30, or how Nissan sells the Leaf in China
Models - Nissan Leaf 2016 Best Seller
Thanks to outstanding performances in the USA, Europe and China, the global EV market had its best month ever December, surpassing for the first time the 100.000 units delivered, representing a 20% growth YoY, with 2016 ending with 774.000 units, 40% above 2015, placing the Global plug-in share at some 0.85%, still below the desired 1%, but i believe it will be a question of a few months until that threshold is achieved.
In the models ranking, the big news were the race for Number One between the Nissan Leaf (Including the China-only Venucia e30) and Tesla Model S, with the Froggy Nissan winning the race by less than 1.000 units, pulling out a surprising 4.843 units in December, its best result since March, no doubt thanks to deep discounts, which was enough to resist the expected Model S December deliveries push, which was some 1.000 units below the September peak, possibly due to Tesla prioritizing Model X deliveries over its older brother.
The Bronze medalist BYD Tang ended the year with a general slowdown, having registered only 1.510 units in December, its worst performance in over a year.
If the year had another month, the Chevrolet Volt would have a real shot at the Third Spot, but still, December was a positive month for the GM nameplate, rising to Fourth and having registered a record 3.974 units that month, all while beating the full year record of the Gen1 Volt. And did all of this by selling only in North America and South Korea. Imagine if they marketed it in China and Europe...
The BMW i3 33-kWh-kick continues to be felt, with near-record performances, thus securing the Sixth Place, while the Tesla Model X surged to Seventh, thanks to a record 6.975 units in December, becoming last months Best Selling EV and also outselling for the first time its Model S sibling. Are we witnessing the coming of age of Tesla's Ugly Duckling?
The Renault Zoe kept its Eighth Spot, but the BYD Qin dropped to Ninth in the last month of the year, with only 821 registrations, ending 2016 far from the Fourth Spot won in the previous year.
In #10 we find a surprise, with the BYD e6, the oldest model in this Top 20, climbing to #10 and selling in 2016 more units (20.610) than in the previous six years combined (14.489)...It's amazing what a new (And big, 82 kWh!) battery does to an EV career, eh?
As this is a Full Year Special Edition, we dig a little deeper, into the Top 20, where we can see that eight out of ten models come from China, among them we see the BAIC's sudden drop, the #13 Geely Emgrand EV (#3 in December) rise to power, winning the Rookie of the Year award, while they prepare a Top 10 position for 2017, the discrete but steady rise of the #17 BYD e5 and the #20 Zotye E200.
The two other models come from the D-segment/midsize class, with the #16 Ford Fusion Energi beating its personal record and registering over 16.000 units, while the #19 VW Passat GTE became the Best Selling model from the Volkswagen Group, with 13.246 units.
The rise of the Chinese manufacturers has significantly changed the BEV/PHEV breakdown, at this moment BEV's have a 64% take rate, well above the 36% of PHEV's, we have to go back to 2011 to see such a big difference.
Manufacturers - BYD Reaches 100.000
Not that this changed much at the top, with BYD winning the Manufacturers title for the second time in a row, this time with over 100.000 units (A new all-time record), as the company predicted at the beginning of the year. Now, will they be able to deliver 200.000 units in 2017 as they had said on their Master Plan? Mmmm...
Tesla ended in Second once again, with over 76.000 units, and it all points out that it will continue to be BYD's runner-up this year.
As for the Bavarian automaker, the benefits from a strong (And extensive) lineup continue to be felt, securing its first podium seat with 62.148 units, or 3% of all BMW's sold in the World. In December three Bimmer models have beaten their personal best results and another was introduced (BMW 530e), so all points to a strong beginning this year and the 100.000 goal that the brand set for 2017 seems not only perfectly attainable, but somewhat modest.
Below the podium many brands went all out in December, with Chevrolet having the most significant performance, not for the number itself, currently 4.572 units is not that much, but its a new record for the American brand and allowed it to overcome Mitsubishi and reach #8, an important step above the #11 achieved in 2015.
As for Mitsubishi, sales were down 33% YoY to 32.000 units, its worst performance since 2013 and the #9 spot is the worst position for the Japanese manufacturer since it started in 2009...Carlos Ghosn has a big job ahead at Mitsubishi.
Looking to the places below the #10 Renault, Mercedes is up to #13, with the German brand sales surging 88% to 20.000 units, Geely is the Newcomer of the Year, jumping to #17 in its first year in the market, while Audi had the strange thing that was down six positions to #20, despite growing 25% YoY.
"We are growing, but the others are growing even faster!" - A phrase that must have been said sometime in EV-related Audi meetings, with the ultimate humiliation being the fact that it is currently the slowest selling of the Three German Premium Marys (Oh, the shame!).
- City Car - Zotye Cloud EV (16.417 units), Chinese specialty, remaining positions in the podium also by chinese models: Chery eQ (16.017 units) and Zotye E200 (13.154).
- Subcompact - BMW i3 (25.934 units), winning over its arch-rival Renault Zoe (22.009), BAIC E-Series EV (18.814) Third once again;
- Compact - Nissan Leaf (51.882 units), the Chevy Volt (28.296) and BYD Qin (21.868) were too far behind to pose a threat;
- Midsize - Ford Fusion Energi (16.009 units), once again leader of the class, with the VW Passat GTE (13.246) in Second and the Mercedes C350 (10.458) in Third;
- Fullsize - Tesla Model S (50.944 units), hands down leader. Second and Third Place for Mercedes: The S500e was Second with 1.498 units and the E350e Third, with 1.117.
- Sport car / Convertible - BMW i8 (3.908 units), without real competition, the Second Placed was the Cadillac ELR (617 units) and Third was the Citröen e-Mehari (544);
- SUV - BYD Tang (31.405) removed the #2 Outlander PHEV (27.322) from the leadership, with the Tesla Model X an ambitious Third (25.299);
- MPV / Minivan - BYD e6 (20.610 units), shaming the #2 Ford C-Max Energy (8.203) and #3 BMW 225xe Active Tourer (5.931);
- LCV / Van - This time was Nissan winning, with the e-NV200/Evalia gathering 4.616 units overcoming the 4.031 of the Renault Kangoo ZE, with the StreetScooter being a distant Third (1.500 units);
- Pick up Truck - The Chinese Dongfeng Rich EV (305 units) arrived just in time to replace the Mitsubishi Minicab Miev Truck (66 units) and continue the EV saga in the Pick-up market. Unless legacy OEMs wake up to this niche, Chinese carmakers will probably fill the void soon with a number of models.