Volkswagen delivered 394,000 EVs in 2023 as it falls behind Tesla


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Volkswagen handed over 394,000 EVs in 2023. Although EV deliveries were up 21% from last year, they still represented less than 9% of the VW brand’s total deliveries. The company said it expects the market to “remain challenging” this year.

The Volkswagen brand handed over 394K EVs in 2023

The Volkswagen brand announced fully electric vehicle sales grew by 21.1% in 2023, with around 394,000 EVs handed over.

Its largest markets included China, Germany, the US, the UK, Sweden, France, Norway, and Belgium. VW delivered around 30,000 ID.4 models in Germany, up 62.9%. In the US, around 38,000 ID.4 electric SUVs were handed over (+84.2% YOY).

In China, VW’s most important market (with ~40% of sales), over 75,000 ID.3 EVs were handed over, an over 200% increase.

Despite this, Volkswagen EVs represented only 8% of the total 4.87 million vehicles sold last year. The automaker cut EV production several times last year, citing slowing demand.

Volkswagen’s CFO Arno Antilitz said EV orders fell to 150,000 in Europe last October. That’s half of the 300,000 VW had last year at that time.

(Source: Volkswagen)

Hildegard Wortmann, who oversees VW’s marketing and sales, explained that the lower order intake was “due to the lower-than-expected overall market trend.” According to Wortmann, the growth in EV sales last year was thanks to a higher backlog.

VW faced several supply chain issues that extended delivery times and are now being worked out. The VW Group said it expected EV sales share to reach around 8% to 10% in 2023, down from 11%.

Volkswagen ID.4 Pro (Source: VW)

The automaker hopes its refreshed ID.4 and ID.5 can help jumpstart sales. VW’s updated EVs feature longer range and added tech.

Meanwhile, Volkswagen slashed EV prices in Europe earlier this week as it looks to compete with Tesla. Tesla’s Model Y looks to be the best-selling car (electric or gas) in 2023 as the EV leader continues expanding its network.

2023 VW ID.4 (Source: Volkswagen)

VW fell behind Tesla in US market share as EV adoption continues climbing. Tesla ended 2023 with 4.2% share of the US auto market.

Electrek’s Take

While Volkswagen looks to make up for lost time, other automakers are pulling ahead. Many automakers are already at double-digit (or 100%) EV sales.

Volkswagen EVs accounted for 8.3% of total deliveries in 2023. That’s up 1.4% from 2022 (6.9%). Meanwhile, other automakers, like Volvo, are already achieving over 15% EV share.

Volvo sold over 113,000 EVs last year, up 70% compared to 2022 (66,749). The Swedish automaker has several new models, including the EX30 (check out our review), starting at $35,000, that it expects to fuel EV sales in 2024.

Jim Rowan, Volvo’s CEO, said, “We are not seeing any order cancellations or any slowdown in order intake,” despite the reported “EV market slowdown.”

While Volvo aims to be an all-electric brand by 2030, VW targets 50% EV sales. Automakers like Volvo and Hyundai, who have committed to EVs, are reaping the rewards as others fall behind.

Volkswagen hopes new EVs like the ID.7 can help spark growth in 2024. However, Imelda Labbé, VW Board Member, said, “We expect the market environment to remain challenging in 2024.” The company believes it’s in the “right position” with an updated lineup.

Will VW spark EV growth in 2024? Or will it fall further behind leaders like Tesla as the industry shifts to electric? Let us know what you think in the comments.

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