Renault claims it is now the EV leader in Europe. The French carmaker announced as much as it wrapped up sales figures for 2020.
The carmaker’s worldwide sales figures are down due to the pandemic, but its EV sales have been buoyed by the little Renault Zoe, which moved in big numbers across the region. Really, Renault’s EV figures have not been buoyed by the Zoe so much as surged on. Renault sold 115,888 electric vehicles in Europe. This is an increase of 101.4 percent over 2019. Of those EVs sold, 100,657 were Zoes.
Clearly, it’s because of the Zoe that Renault is claiming the EV crown in Europe, and we would tell the French multinational to mind its victory lap, with competitors like the Volkswagen ID.3 and the MG ZS EV at the Zoe’s heels. But there’s no denying that the Zoe is enjoying unprecedented success.
And even though the Zoe is Renault’s EV heavy-hitter at the moment, making up roughly 86 percent of Renault’s entire EV sales, the carmaker expects its other BEV and PHEV models — such as the Clio, Captur and Megane Estate — to round out the sales stats. And Renault is looking forward to its upcoming E-TECH hybrids like the Arkana and Megane sedan.
Try saying that last model name fast five times — it’s actually not that hard, but it is fun. The Dacia Spring Electric and the Renault Twingo Electric will join the Zoe this year, too, and this gives us a clear look at the Groupe Renault’s EV lineup into the new year. Those three models cover the crossover, mini, and supermini segments, so Renault is placing itself in a good position to take on the likes of Volkswagen and Honda.
And to zoom out and look at the broader European market, overall sales of EVs — again, both PHEVs and BEVs — reached 1.33 million units last year, according to Schmidt Automotive Research. That figure amounts to 12 percent of all new cars sold across Europe in 2020. Even though that is a relatively small slice, it’s still a significant number.
Though, it’s important to note that the delta in ICE vs. EV sales could have skewed slightly in favor of electrics due to the pandemic affecting sales overall. Meaning, EVs got a bigger percentage this year as overall sales were down; fewer cars were sold, but more of those that were sold were EVs.
But the big EV push is just beginning, and as of right now, in Europe Renault is pushing hardest.