Various firms’ demand for environmentally friendly vehicles is boosting sales of Citroen’s electric vehicles. Citroen’s spokesman for electric vehicles, Xavier Duchemin, said the French brand expects to sell 4,000 EVs in 2011. Duchemin added that brand is "very confident" that the company will reach its target as it has 2,000 customer orders for its EVs so far in 2011.
About 1,500 of the 2,000 orders, Duchemin said, were for the C-Zero electric minicar that went on sale at the end of December 2010 and the other 500 were for an electric version of its Berlingo car-derived van set to arrive in showrooms mid-March 2011.
He added that Citroen aims to sell 10,000 EVs in 2012. He said that sister brand Peugeot foresees a similar EV volume. Duchemin told Automotive News Europe at the recent Geneva auto show that companies buy Citroen EVs because “they want to be green.”
Firms like the German railway network, the French postal service and General Electric are some of the major customers for Citroen's EVs, which have no carbon dioxide emissions and as a result, are considered more environmentally friendly than diesel or gasoline vehicles.
Citroen is “confident” that its EV sales will not suffer after the ending of incentives of up to EUR5,000 offered in many European countries.
Duchemin said electric car drivers can benefit from “indirect” subsidies. For example, in London, EV drivers are not asked to pay the city’s GBP10 a day congestion charge. In other European cities like Paris that may ban or limit cars on certain days to cut pollution, EVs are likely to be exempt.