Fuel consumption in Germany in the spring was around ten percent lower than in the years before the outbreak of the corona pandemic. This is shown by current data from the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (Bafa) on the delivery of fuel to the filling stations. The increased prices for petrol and diesel have obviously had an impact on the way motorists refuel.
Effect also of delivery problems?
Around four million tons of petrol and almost 8.4 million tons of diesel were delivered between March and May. In 2019, the last year before the Corona crisis, it was 4.5 million and 9.5 million tons respectively in the same period. As a result, fuel consumption fell by around ten percent in each case.
In the same period last year, on the other hand, the volume of deliveries, at almost four million tons of petrol and a little more than 8.4 million tons of diesel, was also at a similar level to this year – albeit despite many restrictions as a result of the pandemic.
The sharp rise in fuel prices is likely to be the main reason why customers are reluctant to use petrol stations. In March, fuel prices had risen to unprecedented levels. Delivery problems in parts of the economy could also have played a role in diesel consumption. These are likely to have reduced the need for transport capacity by truck.
Compared to the number of vehicles in Germany, the increased number of electric cars is still too small to explain the decline in petrol and diesel consumption. The proportion of pure electric cars is currently only 1.3 percent, plus about the same number of cars with hybrid drives.
E10 comes into fashion
Price awareness among Germans at the pump may also be the reason why the petrol variant E10 with a higher proportion of bioethanol has been increasingly used in recent months. From March to May 2022, the share of E10 was 22.8 percent, after 16.6 percent last year and around 13 percent in previous years.
E10 is usually six cents per liter cheaper than normal premium petrol. Although most engines can handle the fuel, it has rarely been refueled in recent years. According to ADAC, the additional consumption with E10 is one to 1.5 percent.