One EV registered every minute in the UK
Electric vehicles (EVs) accounted for more than one-third of UK car registrations in July, with battery electric cars registered at a rate of one per minute.
That is according to the latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
According to the report, while hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) volumes increased year-on-year, their market share dropped to 11.3%. Plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) saw a 79.1% rise, accounting for 8.1% of the market in July. Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) witnessed an 87.9% surge, claiming 16.0% of new registrations.
SMMT chief executive officer Mike Hawes said: “The industry remains committed to meeting the UK’s zero-emission deadlines and continues to make the investments to get us there.
“Choice and innovation in the market are growing, so it’s encouraging to see more people switching on to the benefits of driving electric.”
The BEV registration is projected to accelerate to one registered every 50 seconds by the end of the year and 40 seconds by 2024. However, to achieve environmental goals, the report suggests that faster EV adoption is essential.
Hawes added: “With inflation, rising costs of living and a zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) mandate that will dictate the market coming next year, however, consumers must be given every possible incentive to buy.
“Government must pull every lever, therefore, to make buying, running and, especially, charging an EV affordable and practical for every driver in every part of the country.”
Charging point progress
Strides were made with 3,056 new public chargers installed in July, improving the ratio to one charger per 35 new plug-in vehicles, up from one per 58 last year.
To meet the government’s 2030 target of 300,000 charge points, the report recommends that the installation rates must triple to about 10,000 chargers per quarter, necessitating the resolution of obstacles like planning regulations and grid connections.
The 2023 new car registrations outlook projects 1.847 million units, a 0.9% increase from April forecasts.
BEVs are expected to secure a 17.8% market share (330,000 units) this year, slightly lower than April’s estimate, while PHEVs aim for 7.2% (134,000 units).
Looking ahead to 2024, the outlook is revised down by -0.7% to 1.951 million units, due to the cost-of-living crisis.
Nonetheless, the SMMT predicts that plug-in vehicles will account for 30% of 2024’s new car registrations.
B2B van and car sales continue to soar
In July, UK light commercial vehicle (LCV) registrations continued their growth streak, surging 44.2% year-on-year to 26,990 units, according to another report from the SMMT.
Registrations also surpassed pre-pandemic 2019 levels by 4.4%, driven by demand for vans, pickups, and 4x4s, coupled with improved supply chains.
Medium-sized van registrations (2.0 to 2.5 tonnes) tripled, rising 227.4%. Heavier LCVs (2.5 to 3.5 tonnes) increased by 29.3% to 19,111 units, capturing 70.8% of the market. Deliveries of 4x4s and pickups surged by 159.3% and 48.3%, respectively. However, sub-2.0 tonne van registrations dropped by -40.9% to 427 units.
Interest in ZEVs was evident as BEV registrations soared by 94.6% to 1,489 units, capturing a 5.5% market share, up from 4.1% last year.
The LCV outlook for 2023 predicts a 16.1% increase to 328,000 units
In 2024, however, the SMMT is foreseeing 329,000 deliveries (a -5.2% decline). Challenges persist for operators due to higher energy costs and a lack of incentives, despite easing in the semiconductor supply chain.
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