The production of electric cars increased in 2021 by 86% compared to the previous year

Press release N 030 of 19 May 2022

Production of passenger cars in Germany

  • The number of cars produced with internal combustion engines decreased by 23% in the same period
  • Electric car exports rose 92% year-on-year in 2021

WIESBADEN – Electric mobility is booming – also due to the government procurement bonus and tax breaks. As reported by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), about 328,000 cars with purely electric drives worth 13.7 billion euros were produced in Germany in 2021. This was a quantitative increase of 85.8% compared to the previous year and 268 , 0% compared to 2019. For comparison: In 2020, almost 176,400 electric cars worth 8.0 billion euros were produced in Germany, in 2019 there were about 89,000 e-cars worth 31 billion euros.

Despite the growth of pure electric cars, the German car industry still produced mainly cars with classic internal combustion engines in 2021. However, there is a strong downward trend: With around 2.2 million units worth 73.2 billion euros, it was 23.3 % less than the year before (2.8 million units). This also changes the relationship between electric cars and internal combustion engines: While in 2021 almost seven times as many cars with internal combustion engines only rolled off the production line than those with pure electric drive, in 2020 there were about 16 times more internal combustion engines than electric cars.

Foreign trade in electric cars is rising sharply

In 2021, around 300,000 clean electric cars worth 12.6 billion euros were exported. It was almost twice as many (+ 92.4%) as the year before and more than three times as many (+ 210.7%) as in 2019. There was also an increase in imports: with 292,000 imported electric cars for 7.5 mia. euro, the volume increased by 75.8% compared to the previous year – compared to 2019 it was almost four times (+382.3%). For comparison: in 2021, 1.6 million cars with classic internal combustion engines (-22.5% compared to 2020) worth 32.2 billion euros were imported and 1.7 million cars (-27.8%) worth of 59.2 billion euros exported.

The main buyers of electric cars in 2021 were the United Kingdom (49,400 electric cars; +112.6% compared to 2020), followed by the USA (42,500 electric cars; +193.9%) and Norway (33,600 electric cars; +20.4%).

Electric cars were mainly imported to Germany from France. 44,000 electric cars (+ 0.5%) came from there, followed by Slovakia (38,200 cars; + 143.2%) and the United States (35,500 cars; + 127.3%).

New registrations for electric cars increased in 2021 by 83.3% compared to the previous year

According to the Federal Motor Transport Authority, about 356,000 pure electric cars were newly registered in 2021 – an increase of 83.3% compared to the previous year (2020: 194,000 new registrations). The number of electric cars has doubled in the same period: From around 309,000 electric cars on 1 January 2021 to 618,000 electric cars on 1 January 2022.

Methodological note:

The value of the production intended for sale is calculated on the basis of the ex-works sales price obtained during the reporting period or at the time of sale (sales value). The sales value also includes the cost of packaging, even if it is invoiced separately. On the other hand, the invoiced value added tax and consumption tax as well as separately invoiced freight costs and discounts are not included.

In the foreign trade statistics, the following item numbers from the foreign trade statistics item list are summarized for the car segments with classic internal combustion engines: WA87032110, WA87032210, WA87032319, WA87032410, WA87033110, 3 WA87, 3A8, 318, 319, 319, 319.

For the pure electric cars, the WA8703 80 10 passenger car with electric motor was re-evaluated.

Both for cars with internal combustion engine and for electric cars, quads and off-road vehicle (ATVs) and very small vehicles (they are similar to conventional cars in terms of appearance and structure, but not in terms of motorization and energy production). It is not possible to quantify the proportion of these vehicles imported or exported.

Electric cars here mean pure battery electric vehicles (BEV), hybrid cars are not included.


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