New passenger car registrations in Bulgaria in January up 9.8% y/y

There were 2227 new passenger car registrations in Bulgaria in January 2023, an increase of 9.8 per cent on an annual basis, according to figures released on February 21 by the European Automobile Manufacturers Association, ACEA.

Of these, 1696 were petrol cars, 408 diesel, 53 hybrid electric, 51 battery electric, 16 plug in hybrid and three classified as other, ACEA said.

In January 2023, the European Union passenger car market grew by 11.3 per cent to 760 041 units, starting the new year on a positive note, the association said. However, this was largely due to an unusually modest base of comparison in 2022, when the lowest January volume on record was reached, it said.

At a country level, the region’s positive performance was reflected in three of the four key markets. The strongest gains were seen in Spain (51.4 per cent) and Italy (19 per cent), followed by France, with a more modest but still solid growth (8.8 per cent). The exception to this trend was Germany, which recorded a 2.6 per cent decline last month.

During the first month of 2023, battery electric and hybrid passenger car registrations in the EU continued to grow, accounting for 9.5 per cent and 26 per cent of the market, respectively. Nonetheless, petrol remained the most popular fuel type for newly-registered cars in the EU, with a market share of 37.9 per cent.

January registrations of new battery electric vehicles (BEVs) increased by 22.9 per cent, reaching 71 984 cars registered across the EU and a market share of 9.5 per cent (against 8.6 per cent in January 2022).

Most of the region’s markets contributed significantly to this growth, with double- and triple-digit percentage gains. However, there were a few exceptions in some of the EU’s biggest volume markets for this powertrain: Germany (-13.2 per cent), Sweden (-18.5 per cent) and Italy ( 8.7 per cent).

Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) also had a strong start of the year. Their volumes grew by 22.1 per cent to 197 982 units, sustained by double-digit gains in the region’s four biggest markets: Spain (59.3 per cent), Italy (24.7 per cent), Germany (19 per cent), and France (12.5 per cent). This resulted in a market share of 26 per cent, a 2.3 percentage-point improvement compared to January 2022.

On the other hand, EU plug-in hybrid vehicle (PHEV) sales declined by 9.9 per cent to 53 649 units in January, as registrations more than halved in Germany (-53.2 per cent), which until last year was the largest market by volume for such cars. As a result, the market share for PHEVs contracted from 8.7 per cent in January 2022 to 7.1 per cent this year.

Registrations of new petrol cars in the EU recorded a 12.3 per cent increase in January, contributing to the expansion of their market share to 37.9 per cent (against 37.6 per cent in 2022). All the region’s major markets contributed to this growth: Spain (59.4 per cent), Italy (15.5 per cent), France (11.9 per cent) and Germany (3.5 per cent).

By contrast, the EU’s diesel car market continued to struggle – with a decline of 1.6 per cent last month – despite a notable increase in Italian (21.4 per cent) and Spanish (19 per cent) registrations.  This resulted in a drop of two percentage points in market share, from 17.9 per cent to 15.9 per cent, ACEA said.

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The Sofia Globe staff

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