6 June 2018

Sales surge by 5.8% of UK hybrid and electric vehicles

Latest industry figures have highlighted a marked increase in the monthly sales of electric vehicles (EVs) in the UK.

New data for May, released this week by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), shows the market share for EVs and hybrids has increased to 5.8 percent on the previous year. 11,240 units were sold last month, a 38 percent increase on 2017; all sales this year are at 57,000, a dramatic rise of 19.5 percent.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “Fleet renewal is the fastest way to improve air quality and reduce CO2, and this applies to hybrid and plug-in technologies as well as the latest low emission petrol and diesels which, for many drivers, remain the right choice economically and environmentally.”

All car registrations improved slightly with an uptick of 3.4 percent, but still remained in decline on last year. SMMT attributed this to “uncertainty” in the market with diesel cars doing especially badly, dropping in market share for the 14th month in a row.

EV technologies have been growing in prominence in the UK, and across Europe, as car manufacturers and governments recognise the need to transition to cleaner forms of transport. The UK government has pledged to ban all petrol and diesel cars by 2040, something echoed by France last year.

A slew of major car companies have also signalled their intention to drop making new diesel cars in the near future, including Fiat-Chrysler, Porsche, and Volvo.

Tougher regulations on diesel cars and a steep drop in battery costs used in EVs have also led to a more challenging market for the traditional technology. The International Energy Agency’s global data has found electric vehicles passing the 3 million mark as of 2017. This was “largely driven by government policy”, according to their latest report.

AFV = alternative fuel vehicle


Photo Credit: Thomas Doerfer/CC

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