Growing number of natural gas vehicles in Italy

2015 February 28


Vehicles powered by natural gas now hold a market share of 5,3% of overall new car sales in Italy, according to new data from ANFIA, the Italian automotive industry association. ANFIA remarks that Italy has the largest market in Europe for cars with an alternative source of propulsion, both in units (almost 200,000 in 2013) as well as market share (15.3%). Vehicles running on natural gas play an important role.

The report says that in total, Italy counts 880,000 vehicles powered by natural gas on its roads, or around 80% of Europe’s entire car fleet on gas, according to data from energy company ENI.
The rapid growth of Italy’s running park in the recent years has two main reasons: a reduced tax on natural gas as a fuel, and a subsidies programme from the government. The subsidies lasted from 2008 to 2010 and supported the conversion of existing cars as well as the purchase of new gas-powered vehicles manufactured as such on the production lines. As a result the number of gas-powered vehicles increased by 68% since 2008, with the number of CNG stations almost doubling in the meantime.

There are now about 1,060 stations for refueling with natural gas in the country, of which about 1,010 are open to the public. Italy has also 3 import terminals for Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), but lacks truck-loading facilities. As a result the market penetration of LNG is very low. Only 8 L-CNG filling stations exist, which are supplied via tanker trucks with LNG from other countries, mainly Spain.

(based in information)