New registrations of cars

    German car market consolidates

    In 2022 the German passenger car market increased by 1 per cent compared to the weak year before.

    In 2022 the German passenger car market increased by 1 per cent compared to the weak year before.

    After two years of declines, some of which were significant, the German passenger car market grew slightly by 1 percent in 2022, reaching a market volume of just under 2.7 million new registrations. However, the market thus once again fell well short of the 2019 level (-26 percent compared with 2019). The trend was clearly negative in the first half of the year and clearly positive in the second half (H1: -11 percent; H2: +15 percent). In 2022, the shortage of precursor products also impacted vehicle supply, particularly in the first seven months of the year. Subsequently, the situation slowly began to ease. Then at the end of the year, demand for electric cars was strongly fueled by the expiry or reduction of the environmental bonus. The resulting preferential effect caused new registrations to soar, particularly at the end of the year (Nov.: +31 percent; Dec.: +38 percent).

    Owner groups

    The new registrations of the owner groups showed a very different picture in 2022: While new registrations by private owners increased by 5 percent, new registrations by commercial owners fell by 1 percent. Despite the growth in new private registrations, these only reached a volume of just over 950,000 passenger cars; the second lowest level since German reunification. Among commercial owners, all subgroups lost ground except the group of company cars which increased by 6 percent.


    The change in powertrains continued in 2022. While new registrations of vehicles equipped with an internal combustion engine continued to decline, new registrations of passenger cars with alternative drives increased strongly. Compared with 2019, new registrations of gasoline and diesel vehicles have now halved. Sales of electric passenger cars reached a new peak of around 833,000 units. The growth momentum for purely battery-electric passenger cars was higher than for plug-in hybrids (BEV: +32 percent; PHEV: +11 percent). Fuel cell vehicles continue to play a minor role with less than 1,000 units.

    New registrations of electric vehicles increased significantly, particularly at the end of the year. This was due to a preferential effect triggered by the expiry or reduction of the environmental bonus. As a result, the share of electric cars in the German passenger car market reached a new record level of 55.4 percent in December. In 2022 as a whole, the share of electric cars was 31.4 percent, while the share of cars with combustion engines fell to 65.2 percent.

    Manufacturing countries

    The vehicles of German Group brands continue to be highly favored by customers. Last year, their market share was 67.0 percent. In absolute terms, 1.8 million new vehicles with the "German logo" were registered. With 226,400 newly registered vehicles, French brands lost ground (-7 percent). Their market share fell slightly from 9.3 to 8.5 percent. With 203,600 new vehicles, Japanese manufacturers sold fewer passenger cars than in the respective previous year for the fifth time in succession. Their sales fell by 6 percent, reducing their market share to 7.6 percent (previous year: 8.1 percent). Korean manufacturers again achieved an increase in 2022: 183,100 new vehicles represented a rise of 5 percent. As a result, their market share rose from 6.6 to 6.9 percent. At 85,000 passenger cars, sales of vehicles from Italian manufacturers fell by 4 percent. Their market share fell from 3.4 to 3.2 percent.

    Vehicle segments

    Among the big winners among the segments last year were SUVs and Off-Road Vehicles, which reached a volume of 1.1 million new registrations for the first time since 2019 and the second time overall. They increased by 14 percent compared to the previous year. Luxury class vehicles (+6 percent), large vans (+27 percent), utilities (+5 percent), and "other" passenger vehicles (+35 percent) also ended the year on a positive note. The biggest declines were recorded for motorhomes (-18 percent), subcompact cars and minivans (both -14 percent) and small cars (-12 percent).

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