FRANKFURT -- Government subsidies have not significantly boosted EV sales in Europe as customers are swayed by factors other than financial incentives, according to market researchers JATO Dynamics.
Germany is the leading European market for electric car sales, with 1,020 units sold in the first half, despite having one of the region's lowest EV subsidies at 380 euros.
Denmark offers tax incentives of up to 20,588 euros but EV sales were just 283 in the first half. Spain and the UK offer almost identical subsidies of 6,500 euros and 6,400 euros respectively, but 599 EVs were sold in the UK in the first half against Spain's 122.
''The discrepancies highlight the apparently low influence of price on purchase decisions," Gareth Hession, JATO's head of research, said in a statement on Monday.
He added: "It's reasonable to conclude that sales are more affected by other factors such as the degree of urban geography, market maturity and charging infrastructure than was previously thought."
Local factors include the ability to use bus lanes and free city-center parking in Oslo and exemption from London's congestion charge, both of which appear to be more influential than point-of-purchase incentives, Hession said.
He said the EV market is set for significant growth and as the market matures subsidies will exert greater influence as other considerations such as charging infrastructure are addressed.
"As it stands today, even the large subsidies don't address the majority of end user concerns around real world application, flexibility and fitness for purpose. It will be critical for manufacturers to better understand these factors if they are to maximize customer engagement and sales growth," Hession said.