Is Europe Finally Abandoning Diesel Cars?

Jason Siu
by Jason Siu

Diesel car registrations in Europe are falling as the fallout from the diesel crisis continues to make waves.

Last year, registrations of diesel vehicles in Europe, where diesels are much more popular, dropped 7.9 percent to 6.76 million, representing 43.7 percent of the market, which is the lowest for the segment in the past decade. The data comes from JATO Dynamics, which noted the European car industry had a solid year with new registrations totaling 15.57 million, an increase of 3.1 percent compared to 2016. It’s also the highest volume of registrations since 2007 when Europeans registered 16.02 million units.

But even though the market is healthy, diesel vehicles are slumping. Buyers in Europe are switching to traditional gasoline engines, with gasoline car registrations growing by 760,000 units.

SEE ALSO: Humans Inhaled Diesel Exhaust for Research: Report

Like in North America, the crossover and SUV segment is booming in Europe, posting a record 4.56 million registrations last year. The segment grew 19.5 percent in 2017 after registrations in 2016 totaled 3.81 million. Since 2007, market share for SUVs have jumped over 10 percent from 8.5 percent.

And despite Volkswagen‘s connection to the diesel crisis, the German automaker remained the top brand in Europe with nearly 1.7 million registrations. Coming in second was Renault with over 1.1 million and Ford in third place with almost 1.05 million. Europe’s most popular car in 2017? The Volkswagen Golf, with 483,105 registrations. As for the best-selling SUV in Europe, that honor went to the Nissan Qashqai for the second year in a row. It also ranked fifth in total registrations at 247,939.

Jason Siu
Jason Siu

Jason Siu began his career in automotive journalism in 2003 with Modified Magazine, a property previously held by VerticalScope. As the West Coast Editor, he played a pivotal role while also extending his expertise to Modified Luxury & Exotics and Modified Mustangs. Beyond his editorial work, Jason authored two notable Cartech books. His tenure at saw him immersed in the daily news cycle, yet his passion for hands-on evaluation led him to focus on testing and product reviews, offering well-rounded recommendations to AutoGuide readers. Currently, as the Content Director for VerticalScope, Jason spearheads the content strategy for an array of online publications, a role that has him at the helm of ensuring quality and consistency across the board.

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