Europe 2020. Electric Two-Wheeler sales up 22%


European Electric Scooter and Motorcycles Market grew up in double digit in the 2020. Continental sales (28 countries including UK) have been 75.000, up 22.6%, although sales declined in France and Spain.

European e-scooter market in 2020

As you may have seen, reading our report on European market, one of covid 19 effect is to boost individual mobility demand, with almost all the European two wheeler markets fast recovering after the spring shutdown with a next year’s Outlook more than positive.

The demand is really strong for electric scooter as well, while the consumers find just a limited offer with many manufacturer offering a product line up thought for the fleet and sharing market, which was more than 90% of last year volume.

The fleet market was (and still is ) in trouble due to the sharp economic decline in the covid era and this is reflected on the lost reported by electric market in Spain and France.

However, even supported by local and national incentives, the demand is shifting from B2B to B2C, with final consumers asking for different products, smart, light, with a removable easy-to-charged battery and at a competitive price.

Not many products actually in the market match this characteristics with the effect that most of consumers at the end of purchase process still decide to buy a more traditional ICE vehicle.

However, the market is growing, with continental sales (28 countries including UK) in the 2020 at 73.593 units, up 22.6%.

European e-scooter and e-motorcycles market heritage

The market is still in its infancy and is not yet taking the potential in theory in place.

So far the development has been completely in the hands of start-ups, with big players, like Japanese, Koreans and European established brand, waiting before really investing in this area. The electric models introduced by affirmed brands seems more an exercise for Trade Show than for producing real sales.

The first e-scooters were introduced in Europe over ten years ago, but today, the most of the pioneer brands are not more in the business.

A first peak was achieved by the market in the 2012 with 19.000 sales at European level (EU28), representing 1.22% of continental two-wheeler market. But then the sales dropped down with only 11.150 sales two years later (0.87% of the total), before to start a second phase, almost with new players, new start-ups and new cash.

In these second phase the technology was a little more elaborated and the manufacturers were taking more under consideration the “reality” behind the dream to sell e-scooter working to improve the mileage coverage, to reduce the battery charging time and, over all, improve the product quality. In fact the limits of the first stage were mainly related to the low quality of the battery and to purchase an e-scooter was usually an awful customer experience in terms of cost and a disaster when the device used to be broken within 24 months.

Meantime, the introduction of new regulations within Europe in terms of safety (ABS standard since 2017, Euro3 adoption since 2017 and others) changed the competitive scenario moving the product development across priorities which required more competences and less pioneering.

A third phase started in the 2017/18 when the market was approached even by non-European brands, landed in the Continent with a large experience base done in China (Niu, Super Soco) or with a bright vision to the future (like Gogoro). Sales growth accelerated and the segment created a solid base in the 2019, achieving a record of 61.629 units, including 1.954 Motorbike (Zero Motorcycles for the most).

The market become more concentrated and few brands control the sales, with the top 5 manufacturers (Niu, Silence, Askoll, Super Soco and Govecs) controlling 44.5% of the market.

Terminology is not a detail

The terms “electric-scooter” is quite popular and searching on the web it is used all over the World referring to e-kick models, e-bicycles, electric moped. Indeed if you think at a Vespa-like vehicles, this should be the only to which refer using the term “scooter”.

Based on this huge confusion, the electric vehicles sold by brands like Lime or Segway have been considered among the scooters, while they represent a different mobility device, with the passenger standing up, with small size and little distance coverage and, least but not last, an affordable price, while “real” electric scooters price are over 10 times higher.

We follow scooter and motorcycles market and exclude from our data any e-kick models.