Analysis of Electromobility in Six Countries— Where to Invest Next
Electromobility in the Netherlands
Demand in the Netherlands
Of a total of 8.37 million passenger cars in the Netherlands, around 270,000 had an electric drive on January 1, 2018. BEV sales doubled in 2017 compared to the previous year. In contrast, demand for plug-in hybrids has collapsed: In 2017, sales only reached around six percent of their 2016 volume, due to a change in subsidies. Anyone who also uses a business car privately must pay the so-called "bijtelling" tax. It is due for private use of more than 500 kilometers per year and currently amounts to a single payment of 22 % of the vehicle value. In the case of hybrids, a preferential rate of four percent was applied until the end of 2016. From 2017 this will only apply to BEV.
The Dutch government plans that one tenth of all new vehicles in 2020 and, five years later, even half of them are equipped with electric drive trains. From 2030 onwards, only emission-free new cars are to be sold. The country itself has no significant car production, which makes it relatively easy to enforce such a regulation. According to industry experts, the targets are ambitious but realistic. Professor Martin Steinbruch, whose forecasts are used by the industry association Doet, expects that the sale of electric cars in 2018 and 2019 will double compared to the previous years. For 2025, Quarry predicts BEV new registrations of just under 353,000.
Production in the Netherlands
Due to the insignificant automobile industry in the Netherlands, production is limited to a few companies. According to VDL, it has become the Western European market leader in the field of battery-powered buses. At the end of 2017, around 200 electric buses from the manufacturer were in daily use. Until recently, the segment was still seen as an interesting additional project, however, by 2022 VDL expects to sell only electric buses in the Netherlands. In 2018, the supplier also wants to launch an electric minibus with a range of 220 kilometers. E-buses from Ebusco are used in the Netherlands, Germany, Norway and France.
The battery-powered truck segment is still limited to local use in urban distribution. VDL is developing an e-truck, which in 2018 will be used to attract customers in the area of inner-city distribution with a range of 120 kilometers. In the medium term, the electric truck business is expected to have a promising growth potential.
Solar car prototypes are being developed at the country's technical universities. The Eindhoven Solar Team has developed a five-seater family car that was officially registered in the summer of 2017. On sunny days, this car has a range of up to 1,000 kilometers. Five developers of the Eindhoven Solar Team contributed their knowledge to a new company and presented the Lightyear One model in June 2017. The plug-in hybrid with solar cells is said to have an annual range of 10,000 kilometers.
Infrastructure in the Netherlands
The Netherlands has the second densest loading infrastructure in Europe after Norway. According to the International Energy Agency, about 12 % of all public charging stations worldwide are located in the Netherlands. With 15,382 public and 17,594 semi-public charging poles, the charging infrastructure nearly covers the entire country. Dutch companies have become market leaders in charging solutions in recent years. New Motion operates Europe's largest network with 50,000 charging stations in 22 countries.
EV-Box is the world's largest supplier of charging solutions and additional services for electric vehicles. The company now operates around 48,000 charging stations in about 980 cities worldwide. EV-Box is responsible for the entire charging infrastructure in Amsterdam and Rotterdam and is working with various partners on further expansions throughout Europe. At the end of 2017, the fast-charging network consisted of 761 charging connections. The charging capacity of the systems is also evolving. While the current generation is designed for a maximum of 120 kilowatts, new high-speed charging stations offer 150 kilowatts and ultra-fast charging stations offer 350 kilowatts of power.