“I think over 100,000” – this is how Minister Waldemar Buda replied to a journalist’s question about the number of electric cars in Poland. He then stated that he had seen figures of “well over 50,000.” So we present the latest data.
Electric cars in Poland were one of the topics of discussion in the program “Guest of Radio ZetApril 26. The host of the program, Bogdan Rymanowski, reminded the Minister of Development and Technology, Waldemar Buda, that “seven years ago, the prime minister announced that by 2025 there would be a million electric cars in Poland” and asked: “And what is left of these announcements?”.
Waldemar Buda began to evasively answer about the plans of Tesla and Volkswagen, but the host interrupted him and asked: “Do you know how many electric cars are now in Poland?”
Waldemar Buda: Well, I think over 100,000. Bogdan Rymanowski: Less than 50. Waldemar Buda: I don’t think so. I think more. I saw statistics that were well above 50,000 and the dynamics is over a dozen percent per year.
Later in the conversation, Buda, when asked if the Prime Minister’s announcements were pipe dreams, said: “You need to have ambitious plans, you need to correct them in times of war, COVID and so on.”
So we check how many electric cars are now on Polish roads. And we explain what happened to “ambitious plans”.
About 70,000 electric vehicles in Poland
We have already written about the unfulfilled promise of a million electric cars in Poland in 2025 in our series “Promises minus”. As we reported, data on electricians driving on Polish streets is published every month by the Polish Alternative Fuels Association (PSPA), which together with the Polish Automotive Industry Association (PZPM) created the Electromobility Counter. The figures presented in it come from analyzes of data obtained, among others, from from the Central Register of Vehicles and Drivers, as well as own research and records of both organizations.
According to March 2023 data were registered in Poland 67.1 thous. electric passenger cars. Half of this group are fully electric cars (BEV, battery electric vehicles) – 33.3 thousandand the other half are plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) – 33.8 thousand. 3.6 thousand can be added to this group. vans and trucks with electric drive (mainly BEV), which in total gives 70.7 thous. vehicles.
Both all-electric (BEV) and plug-in hybrid (PHEV) cars are recharged from an external power source, but the PHEV also has an internal combustion engine under the hood that can assist the electric or run on its own. There are also so-called classic hybrid cars (HEV, hybrid electric vehicles), but their electric motors cannot be charged from an external source, because they recover energy during driving and braking. Therefore, this third category is not taken into account when counting electric cars.
Data from the Electromobility Meter is used by the European Commission as part of the European Alternative Fuels Observatory. On project page It was reported that at the end of 2022, all-electric cars (BEV) accounted for 0.12 percent, and plug-in hybrids 0.11 percent. fleet of passenger cars on Polish roads.
On the other hand, the dynamics of registration of electric cars in Poland is indeed high, even higher than suggested by Waldemar Buda. According to PSPA data, in the first three months of 2023, 47 percent more were registered. more such cars than in the first three months of the previous year (January-March 2023: 8,341; January-March 2022: 5,681). Despite this dynamics of electric cars in Poland, however, there are much less than the 100,000 mentioned by the Minister of Development and Technology.
“Ambitious plans” unrealized before the pandemic and the war
At the end of the conversation, Waldemar Buda, when asked about the government’s announcement of a million electric cars, said: “You need to have ambitious plans, you need to correct them in times of war, COVID and so on.” Let us recall, however, that in the “National framework for the development of alternative fuels infrastructure policy” published by the Ministry of Energy (already liquidated) and adopted by the government in 2017, however, the planned path to reach the announced one million electricians on Polish roads, broken down by years, was included.
Based on this, we conclude that the government missed its expectations long before the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020, let alone a full-scale war in Ukraine in 2022. In 2017, the Ministry of Energy forecast that by 2019 there will be 32.3 thousand electric cars in Poland. electricians. According to the Electromobility Counter, at the end of 2019, there were only 8.6 thousand electric cars.
100 thousand electric cars in Poland – which Minister Buda mentioned – was supposed to be in Poland already in 2021. And at the end of 2023, there were supposed to be over half a million of them – 549,000. Given the current situation, these plans will not be implemented either.
Main photo source: Andrzej Lange/PAP