Toyota currently dominate the hybrid sales charts, 7 out of 10 positions are held by either a Toyota or the company’s luxury brand Lexus. However plug-in hybrids are forecast to overtake conventional hybrid sales by 2019 as people get wise to the tax benefits of this new generation, low C02 powertrain.
By Giles Milner, April 24, 2015
Analysts have forecast that plugin-in hybrid sales could reach 1.2 million sales per year by 2019. Of the 232k hybrids sold during 2014 around 40k of those sales consisted of plug-in hybrids.
As more manufactures such as Mercedes, BMW and Volkswagen go down the plug-in hybrid route the choice and therefore the price should drop. The real reason for the eventual rise in plug-in hybrid sales is due to tougher EU emissions laws coming into effect by 2020.
Volvo is planing to offer plug-in derivatives for all of its current models, the company initially forecast making 5k plug-in units per year for its new XC90 but demand has been stronger than expected and Volvo increased the annual production target to 15k units. Volvo already offer a plug-in hybrid version of the V60 and S60L.
Not every manufacturer has ridden the conventional hybrid wave of sales success, Land Rover has experienced a slow up take of the Range Rover Sport and Range Rover diesel hybrids. Just 266 units were sold. Demand hasn’t been that great for the ActiveHybrid derivative of the BMW 7 Series, 5 Series and 3 Series.
The reason is that these premium brands don’t offer a big enough fuel saving for potential buyers to make the switch to conventional hybrids.
Porsche initially offered conventional hybrid power for the Panamera and Cayenne but made the switch to plug-in hybrids with the Panamera E-Hybrid, in doing so it has seen sales increase from 134 to 972.
Audi will also offer both a diesel and gasoline plug-in hybrid of the next generation Q7. Volkswagen have started their plug-in hybrid campaign with the Golf GTE
Mitsubishi saw the light very early on, the Outlander PHEV became Europe’s best selling plug-in hybrid in 2014 racking up nearly 20k of sales. The UK and the Netherlands were the prime markets for Mitsubishi.