New registrations of cars with hybrid drives in Germany rose by 43 percent against the previous year in 2016, according to a report published by the Federal Motor Transport Authority. Almost 48,000 vehicles with a dual drive system were registered in the course of the year. This is the good news for the world of electromobility. The bad news is that the number of newly registered pure e-cars fell by 7.7 percent in 2016 compared with the previous year, numbering 11,410.

So far even the purchase bonus for e-cars is apparently not enough to kick start electromobility in Germany. Since July 2016, buyers of purely electric cars and hybrids have enjoyed a refund of 4,000 and 3,000 euros respectively. According to figures released by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs, this bonus had been availed a mere 9,000 times by 1 January 2017, with half of the applications coming from companies.

Quadrupling in China

This leaves Germany still miles away from the world’s largest market for electric cars, namely China. According to a study conducted by management consultants Roland Berger, sales of electric vehicles quadrupled in China between 2014 and 2015, totalling 330,000 in absolute numbers. However, the proportion of electric vehicles as a percentage of the total market for cars in China only stands at 1.25 percent. In Germany, by comparison, the figure is 0.76 percent. Measured against this yardstick, there is still a lot of work to be done to turn the spread of electromobility into a worldwide, mass-market phenomenon.