Alternative fuel vehicle sales soar in the UK, with 143% growth in EV market

Half way through the year, the electric car market is proving that it is still performing strongly, showing record growth of 143.9% up to the end of June.

In the first six months of this year, 2,558 fully electric cars were registered in the UK, according to the latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), compared to just 1,049 during the same period of 2013.

 

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The market was boosted by a widening product offering, with consumers able to buy new models such as the BMW i3, as well as existing models such as the Nissan LEAF and Renault ZOE.

Sales of other types of rechargeable electric cars such as plug-in hybrids and range-extended models like the Vauxhall Ampera and Toyota Prius PHEV, have also shown impressive market growth in the first half of the year, growing 90.4 per cent, from 511 units to 973 in 2014.

Ordinary, non-rechargeable hybrids such as the Toyota Auris Hybrid, remain the most popular models in the alternative fuel sector, with a very respectable increase of 43.5 per cent from 12,668 in the first six months of 2013, up to 18,212 so far this year.

Overall, the alternative fuel vehicle (AFV) sector grew 51.3 per cent in the first half of the year, up to 23,337 units – growing nearly five times faster than the overall new car market performance.

SMMT reveals the figures for AFVs as it releases its figures for the whole UK new car market. Across all sectors, 1,287,265 new cars registered in first six months of the year – a 10.6 per cent rise in the market and the best half-year total since 2005.

In June alone, the market grew 6.2 per cent to 228,291 units.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “Improving economic conditions have helped propel the UK new car market to a strong first half-year performance, with registrations up 10.6 per cent on the same period in 2013.

“Key to attracting consumers is the ever-improving efficiency of new cars, an important factor that is highlighted by the 51.3 per cent increase in alternatively-fuelled vehicle registrations so far this year. The overall market has risen faster than we were expecting but, after a bumper March, growth is showing signs of stabilising around our forecast level.”

Thanks to growing consumer focus on fuel economy of the cars they buy, the average official MPG of a new car registered so far in 2014 stands at 57.4mpg on the combined cycle compared with 54.5mpg in 2012.

This also means lower emissions with the average UK new car CO2 output dropping 6.5 per cent between Q1 2012 (134.6g/km) and Q2 2014 (125.8g/km).

Ford still dominates the UK new car market, with its Fiesta model, followed by its Focus model, the best selling cars in the UK.

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Source : The Green Car Website