European Federation for Transport and Environment (T&E) in their 2019 study projects a total of 214 electric vehicle (EV) models across Europe by the end of the year 2021.
This figure is triple the expected figure at the beginning of 2020 which is about 98 full electric and plug-in hybrid models.
The breakdown of this growth in terms of the different companies currently producing EVs are shown below.
Volkswagen is expected to produce the highest number of vehicles, with an additional 41 models to their roster by 2021, totalling to an estimate of 65 models. This would also make the company the one with the most number of EV options among those considered in the study.
In second place is Daimier, which is expected to launch around 23 more models by the year 2021, a significantly lower estimate compared to Volkswagen. Taking this into account, the estimated total of model offerings from Daimier will reach 37.
A close third is BMW, which is expected to launch 23 more models by 2021, arriving at an estimated total of 23 models.
The production centers are expected to be located in Western Europe — in Germany, France, Spain, and Italy. However, it is Slovakia which is expected to have the highest number of EVs per capita by the year 2025.
A huge wild card in these projections in the United Kingdom. T&E said that a no-deal Brexit scenario — which is turning out to be more likely than ever — can easily reverse all the expected growth.
Another important consideration not taken into account in the projections is the COVID-19 outbreak. This delayed the Brexit talks and also greatly affected the automotive industry in Europe.
Both Ford and Daimler recently announced a temporary shutdown in vehicle and engine production at its factories in lieu of the outbreak. This, of course, would mean that the figures are likely to be less than what was projected last year.
The age of combustion is no more
Nonetheless, even with these factors taken into consideration, it is clear that there is a recognition of the prospect of large-scale electrification of vehicles given the aggressive launches planned by the European carmakers.
According to T&E transport and e-mobility analyst, Lucien Mattheu, this growth is a pivotal moment in the automotive industry of Europe. He noted that carmakers are investing €145 billion in electrification.
He also mentioned that the battery making is about to rise in Europe. T&E reports that 16 large-scale lithium-ion battery cell plants are set to come to Europe by the year 2023.
These plants are expected to deliver around 131 GWh of battery production capacity, which is enough to support the projected 130 GWh energy demand of EVs and storage batteries in Europe the same year.
Mattheu discussed that there is a need to send a clear signal to the car industry that there is no way back. He said that there eventually must be an agreement to phase-out petrol- and diesel-powered vehicles in Europe.
“The age of the combustion engine is coming to an end,” Mattheu remarked.