Are hybrid cars really more popular than diesel?

A quick read of the auto market data may suggest that hybrid cars (non-plug-in and plug-in) are now selling more than diesel-fueled vehicles. However, this is not quite the case and we explain why. It’s not just electric cars that are on the rise right now. Even if the latter […]

A quick read of the auto market data may suggest that hybrid cars (non-plug-in and plug-in) are now selling more than diesel-fueled vehicles. However, this is not quite the case and we explain why.

It’s not just electric cars that are on the rise right now. Even if the latter have been largely favored by government policies for some time, which is reflected in the sales figures, and even if the ones we are going to talk about in this article are a little less so, hybrids have also gained quite a bit of share. Steps. The results at the start of the year are particularly edifying. In a market up 50.1% from January to May inclusive – quite spectacular growth but logical given the lack of containment this year -, hybrid sales (plug-in and non-plug-in combined) increased by 226.3%. A markedly higher increase than that of electrics: + 65.2%. By adding the registrations of plug-in and non-plug-in hybrids, we even notice that the total (171,724) is higher than that of diesel (171,588), 136 more. Are hybrids more popular than diesel today? Not quite because are included in the figures for non-plug-in hybrids models that have hybrid only in name.

Energy 5 months 2020 5 months 2021 Evolution PDM * 2020 PDM * 2021
EnergyGasoline 5 months 2020240,863 5 months 2021312,470 Evolution+ 29.7% PDM * 202049.97% PDM * 202143.20%
EnergyDiesel 5 months 2020155,960 5 months 2021171,588 Evolution+ 10% PDM * 202032.36% PDM * 202123.72%
EnergyNon-rechargeable hybrid 5 months 202039,711 5 months 2021116,445 Evolution+ 193.2% PDM * 20208.24% PDM * 202116.10%
EnergyPlug-in hybrid 5 months 202012 916 5 months 202155,279 Evolution+ 328% PDM * 20202.68% PDM * 20217.64%
EnergyElectric 5 months 202031 252 5 months 202151 615 Evolution+ 65.2% PDM * 20206.48% PDM * 20217.14%
EnergyLPG 5 months 20201,148 5 months 202115 840 Evolution+ 1,279.8% PDM * 20200.24% PDM * 20212.19%
EnergyCNG 5 months 202099 5 months 202183 Evolution– 16.2% PDM * 20200.02% PDM * 20210.01%
EnergyHydrogen 5 months 202046 5 months 20217 Evolution– 84.8% PDM * 20200.01% PDM * 20210.00%
EnergySuperethanol 5 months 20202 5 months 20210 Evolution– 100% PDM * 20200.00% PDM * 20210.00%

Light hybrids included in the calculation

These are light hybrids or “mild hybrid“which we have already told you about several times. A simple technology, it allows manufacturers to lower the CO2 emissions of their range at a lower cost. These vehicles are equipped with ultra-basic hybridization technology (alternator-starter) which has little or sometimes even no impact at all in terms of consumption. Our tests of the Fiat 500 Hybrid or the new Hyundai i20 have shown this recently. Nothing to do with vehicles like the Toyota Yaris Hybrid or the Renault Clio E-Tech which can run in electric mode for a few kilometers and consume really, really little.

In other words, by withdrawing the registrations of light hybrids, diesel regains its place as the second most widely distributed energy in our territory. The operation is not easy insofar as manufacturers increasingly offer several types of hybridization in their range. This is the case of the Hyundai Tucson for example, available in mild hybrid and in hybrid “quite short” (or “full hybrid“). But it is much more with models like the Ford Puma, the Fiat 500 or the Suzuki Swift, only light hybrids. By adding their sales (see top 20 below), we obtain a total of 15 338 registrations. And all the models appearing in the rest of the classification are only light hybrids, with the notable exception of the Hyundai Kona (mild hybrid and full hybrid). We have already managed to easily identify 31,748 models that are not true hybrids. The difference noted previously (136 as a reminder) is largely compensated. Diesel remains in control, but by little.

More and more hybrids (true or false) in the months and years to come

Because it is true that this trend which wants hybrids (light, full hybrid and rechargeable) are more and more popular is not about to stop. This is for the simple reason that it is becoming urgent for manufacturers to reduce their CO2 emissions in order to avoid heavy fines. Too, it’s simple, the latest innovations now offer almost all at least light hybridization. This is the case with the Renault Arkana, all the latest Hyundai models (except the i10 city car) and this is just the beginning. And this can be seen in the figures since the share of gasoline vehicles has also decreased, and not only a little (almost 7 points lost). So it’s not just diesel that are losing ground. Very quickly, non-rechargeable hybrids could thus represent the bulk of sales.

Top 20 best-selling non-plug-in hybrid vehicles

Model Registrations from January to May 2021
ModelToyota yaris Registrations from January to May 202113 891
ModelRenault Clio Registrations from January to May 202110 524
ModelToyota corolla Registrations from January to May 20217 689
ModelToyota C-HR Registrations from January to May 20217,025
ModelHyundai tucson Registrations from January to May 20216,792
ModelFord puma Registrations from January to May 20215 859
ModelFiat 500 Registrations from January to May 20215 769
ModelRenault Captur Registrations from January to May 20215,601
ModelSuzuki swift Registrations from January to May 20215,093
ModelToyota RAV4 Registrations from January to May 20213,710
ModelHyundai Kona Registrations from January to May 20212,542
ModelKia Sportage Registrations from January to May 20212,493
ModelSuzuki ignis Registrations from January to May 20212,211
ModelSuzuki vitara Registrations from January to May 20211,913
ModelKia Stonic Registrations from January to May 20211,839
ModelHyundai i20 Registrations from January to May 20211,755
ModelVolkswagen Golf Registrations from January to May 20211644
ModelFiat Panda Registrations from January to May 20211,624
ModelAudi Q3 Registrations from January to May 20211,479
ModelBMW 3 Series Registrations from January to May 20211,452
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Janelle B. Smith

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