Electric car sales in Denmark stagnating

Phasing back of registration tax having an impact

Electric and plug-in hybrid car sales in Norway, Sweden and Finland continue to impress during the first quarter of 2016. Sales numbers in Denmark, however, are less inspiring.

After a couple of record sales years, the first three months of 2016 yielded a measly 242 electric car sales – a 65 percent decrease compared to the first quarter of 2015, according to figures from energy software solutions firm Insero.

“The gradual introduction of Evs [Electrical Vehicles] into the normal tax system in Denmark has – as expected – had a significant impact on sales,” said Søren Bernt Lindegaard, a consultant at Insero.

“While we saw 1,185 new battery-powered vehicles on average per quarter in 2015, we have only seen 242 new vehicles on the roads so far in 2016.”

READ MORE: Government: electric cars will be full price by 2020

Unintentional repercussions 
The government’s decision last October to phase back registration tax for electric cars over the next four years means that new buyers will be charged 20 percent of the registration tax in 2016, followed by 40 percent, 65 percent and 90 percent in the subsequent years. By 2020, the tax will be reintroduced completely.

Lindegaard contended that, aside from falling behind its Nordic neighbours, the stagnating electric car sector in Denmark will also diminish the nation’s ability to utilise renewable energy produced by sustainable sources, such as wind turbines.

In total, about 5 percent of cars sold in Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland during the first quarter were battery-powered. In Norway, a quarter of all the sold new cars were battery-powered.