The French automobile market had a “good year” in 2023 with registrations up 16.07% and the entry into circulation of a “record” number of electric cars, which represented more than a quarter of the market. In total, 1,774,729 new passenger cars were put into circulation last year, according to figures published Monday by the Automobile Platform (PFA), which represents manufacturers and equipment manufacturers.

“We have managed to sell the vehicles ordered by customers, the crucial problem of the lack of electronic components is disappearing,” François Roudier, head of communications for the PFA, told Agence France-Presse.

Registrations, which mark the delivery of vehicles ordered several weeks and months previously, suffered in 2022 from these shortages. However, 2024 appears “much more problematic”, because “new orders are rather down”, he nevertheless pointed out.

The market has, moreover, once again remained below the symbolic threshold – usually crossed before the Covid-19 pandemic – of two million registered vehicles.

26% of registrations

“We are entering a volume of registrations which will be structurally lower,” estimated François Roudier: sales of entry-level cars have fallen since the pandemic, while “we are seeing a breakthrough in more expensive vehicles. high-end”, more expensive but sold in smaller quantities.

Electric cars, meanwhile, accounted for 26% of total registrations. “It’s a record, we’ve never had this, the movement towards electrification is underway,” according to François Roudier.

All-electric vehicles represented 17% of new registrations, up 47% compared to 2022, while plug-in hybrids, vehicles that can run in electric mode, represented 9% of cars put into circulation (34%). .

Petrol engines, for their part, remained stable, representing more than a third of the fleet put into circulation, while diesel continued to decline: only one in ten new passenger cars registered in 2023 was equipped with a diesel engine.