Sales of battery electric vehicles (BEV) have demonstrated a continued and wider adoption of electric cars in the UK. In February 2019, 731 BEV’s were registered, compared to 355 for the same period the previous year, an increase of over 105%. Year-to-date, the sale of BEV’s has increased by 108.6%. Despite these promising indicators, electric car adoption is still at early stages with BEV total market share of less than 1% in the UK.
Has it been a promising start for PHEVs in 2019?
Sales of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) have increased in February 2019 compared to the same period in 2018. However, the increase of 15.4% is much lower compared to the uptake of BEVs. Plug-in hybrids continue to command a higher market share at 1.5% year to date of total new registrations (3,641 new PHEV registrations year-to-date in 2019).
We believe the reduction in sales volume of PHEVs is due to an increased portfolio of BEVs introduced into the UK market and the negative impact from the announcement by the government in 2018 in regards to grants for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. We envision that new registrations will continue to favour BEVs compared to PHEVs, as the EV market continues to develop and introduce competitive 100% battery electric vehicles.
Has it been a promising start for conventional hybrids in 2019?
Not surprisingly, sales of hybrid petrol-electric vehicles has continued to perform well. Though these vehicles are not ‘plug-in’, they remain a far better choice for driving, than non-hybrid vehicles, given the lower negative environmental impact of hybrid cars and greater fuel efficiency. So far in 2019, nearly 10,000 hybrid petrol-electric vehicles have been registered commanding 4% market share. The sale of hybrid diesel-electric vehicles have continued to drop substantially with 92% reduction compared to the same period last year.
So is the overall picture for alternative fuelled cars positive so far, in 2019?
Certainly 2019 has been a good start for plug-in and hybrid cars with 15,535 registrations as of end February 2019. This is an increase of 28.5% compared to the same period in 2018. Putting this is context with the sale of all cars registered so far in 2019, to include internal combustion engine (ICE), alternatively fuelled cars have performed better compared to the overall market, which declined by 0.6%. We believe that this trend will continue to develop and the market share and growth of plug-in cars and hybrids will continue to grow at the expense of cars with only petrol or diesel drivetrain.
What is the total number of hybrid, BEV and PHEV vehicles on UK roads?
According to the SMMT, there are now nearly 200,000 plug-in vehicles on UK roads, driven by the increased choice of models available for EV consumers. The total number of alternatively fuelled vehicles to include hybrids on UK roads is 620,000.