Simply an incredible year for zero-emission electric vehicles (EVs), as electric driving becomes mainstream! A fantastic way to end 2020 and commence 2021!
Before moving onto the latest results i.e. the December 2020 new car registrations update, let us briefly remind ourselves of the November 2020 registrations update.
November 2020 witnessed a continued increase in the registration of battery-electric vehicles (BEVs), despite a continued slowdown in the sales of petrol and diesel internal combustion engine (ICE) cars.
Petrol new car registrations were down by 41.9% in November 2020, compared to November 2019. Diesel performed worse, with a 56.2% decline. Diesel market share decreased from 23.2% in November 2019 to 14.0% in November 2020. Petrol market share declined from 61.4% to 49.1% in the same period.
BEV market share increased from 3.0% in November 2019 to 9.1% in November 2020. PHEVs (plug-in hybrid electric vehicles) also witnessed a similar increase from 2.8% in November 2019 to 6.8% in November 2020.
December 2020 New Car Registrations
The December 2020 new car registrations update from The Society of Motor traders and Manufacturers (SMMT), is a continuation of the trend witnessed throughout 2020 i.e. diesel cars further declining in market share between December 2019 to December 2020 from 22.3% to 11.9%.
The same is the trend with petrol cars, witnessing a decline from 62.4% to 44.1% between December 2019 to December 2020. In terms of registrations, diesel registrations have declined by 52.5% in December 2020 compared to December 2019, with petrol registrations decreasing 37.0% in December 2020.
The overall market is down over 29%, the worst results for 30 years. It has also been the worst performing year since World War Two. 1.63 million new cars were registered in 2020 compared to 2.3 million in 2019. Of course, the ongoing pandemic has had a significant impact on trading activity, given the numerous lockdowns.
We do believe that all stakeholders, to include households, should challenge their incumbent relationship with mobility. We should aim for developing a UK transportation framework this decade, that reduces the emphasis on personal ownership of vehicles and encourages the use of public transportation, active travel (e-bikes etc) and shared mobility.
We would certainly like to see far fewer cars registered on an annual basis, such that we can reduce the environmental impact and improve air quality across our cities in the UK.
The incredible performance of battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) is certainly good news for the UK automotive sector, and also for air quality! 108, 205 pure electric cars were registered in 2020. An increase of 185.9% over the previous year. Similarly, plug-in hybrid cars also performed well with 66,877 cars registered. An increase of 91.2% from the previous year.
Good to note that the all-electric Tesla Model 3 is back on top of the December 2020 Best Sellers list. However, the lack of BEVs and PHEVs on the SMMT year-to-date 2020 Best Sellers list, is a firm reminder that the despite all the progress, the adoption of electric vehicles still requires much work!
With lockdowns still the ‘norm’ as we commence 2021, we can expect a challenging trading environment, at least for the first quarter of 2021, if not longer. In any case, we expect a continued increase in the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) in the UK in 2021.
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