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Electric cars overtake diesel in Romania

| 2023-05-21 2 min read

Electric cars overtake diesel in Romania

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Electric and hybrid cars are gaining ground in Romania, as the segment represented over 20% of all new cars sold in the country in the first four months of 2023, reports, citing data from the Association of Automobile Manufacturers and Importers (APIA).

Sales of electric cars have consequently overtaken those of diesel, which represented 13.3% of the market. Petrol engines accounted for 66.3% of the sales in Romania in the first four months of the year. Sales of “green” cars rose by almost 30% year-on-year.

With more than 4,000 models sold, fully electric cars experienced a 36.8% year-on-year spike in demand from January and April.

The best-selling brands were Dacia (1,865 units), Tesla (534), Volkswagen (442), Renault (354) and BMW (135). The best-selling models were the Dacia Spring (1,865 units), Renault Megane (292), Tesla Model Y (289), Volkswagen e-UP! (221) and the Tesla Model 3 (208).

Hybrid plug-in cars see sales spike

Plug-in hybrid (PHEV) cars saw a 43.1% increase in the first four months of 2023, as over 1,700 were sold. The top-selling PHEV brands were Mercedes Benz (311), Ford (299), BMW (207), Volvo (152) and Mazda (110). A plug-in hybrid (PHEV hybrid) car can be charged from an external power source. 

The 5 most popular PHEV models were the Ford Kuga (290 units sold), Mercedes Benz GLE (114), Mazda CX 60 (110), Renault Captur (109) and Mercedes Benz GLC (81).

Full hybrid (HEV) cars sold more than 3,734 cars, up 17.3% compared to the first four months of last year. A full hybrid works as an electric car at lower speeds and uses petrol at faster speeds. It may also use both electric and gas power for extra strength.

The top-selling full hybrid brands according to the APIA’s data – which did not include mild hybrid cars – were Toyota (2,197), Renault (460), Honda (295), Hyundai (258) and Ford (253). A mild hybrid supports systems such as the car stereo, but only boosts the engine briefly during acceleration. 

The best-selling hybrid models without external recharging were the Toyota Corolla with 571 units, the Toyota Yaris (487) and the Toyota RAV4 (475), wrote.

PHEV hybrids have larger, costlier batteries than HEVs, and need an external power source for a full recharge, while the latter use regenerative braking to recharge. If the batteries run out, both types become petrol-run cars.