Bonn/Berlin — Car buyers in Europe can now get their hands on a brand-new electric vehicle (EV) for less than the typical cost of a cellphone contract. Thanks to newly generous subsidies, some are even free.

Shoppers have swarmed virtual showrooms in Germany and France — the region’s two largest passenger-car markets — after their national governments boosted EV incentives to stimulate demand. Their purchase subsidies are now among the most favourable in the world, according to BloombergNEF...

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