Electric Car News Roundup – 42

electric car news

Electric Car Queries Soar Over UK Plan To Ban Polluting Vehicles  

Online searches rise 162% after government proposes to halt petrol and diesel sales by 2035.  Online searches for electric cars surged in the hours following the UK government’s announcement of plans to ban petrol and diesel car sales by 2035. 

electric car charging
Electric Car Charging (credit: FT)

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It is hardly surprising that enquiries for electric cars have increased significantly since the announcement of the 2035 ban by Boris Johnson.  We at e-zoomed have certainly also seen an increase in enquiries. In fact, there has been a steady increase in enquiries for electric cars for the past 12 months.  January 2020 witnessed a 203% increase in BEV registrations compared to January 2019 and it is a similar theme for annual registrations in 2019 compared to 2018.

There are a number of factors that have contributed to the increase in EV enquiries and registrations.  Some of these include:

  • Significant increase in press coverage in the mainstream media.
  • An increase in the unveilings and sale of new battery-electric vehicles (BEVs).
  • A significant improvement in emission-free range of the latest models.  WLTP ranges above 250 miles are fast becoming common place. 
  • An improvement in public charging infrastructure, in particular, rapid charging infrastructure. 

In regards to the inclusion of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) in the consultation process, we do agree with the government.  In our view, given the increase in performance of pure electric cars and increase in public charging infrastructure, the importance of the role played by hybrid vehicles has diminished.  Moreover, the sooner we migrate to zero-emissions driving, the greater is the positive impact i.e. lower air pollution and lower harmful emissions.  

Petrol And Diesel Car Ban Could Be Introduced As Early As 2032 Transport Secretary Admits 

Petrol and diesel cars could be banned across the UK as early as 2032 according to Transport Secretary Grant Shapps in an even more ambitious target for the motoring industry to meet.   Petrol and diesel cars were set to be scrapped by 2040 although this was brought forward to 2035 by the government last week.  The ban will see the sale of petrol and diesel cars suspended in an effort to remove all highly-polluting cars by 2050 to meet the zero-carbon target.  

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps (credit: Express)

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We have said it before and will say it again.  We applaud the UK government for taking leadership in the transition to zero-emission electric driving.  Bringing forward the ban is a prudent move, as the sooner we can close the chapter on internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles, the sooner we can move forward to emission-free transportation.  Of course, the government will need to work closely with other stakeholders in the automotive industry, to include automotive manufacturers and suppliers, to help them manage the transition to electric vehicles.  This is a complex transition and needs to be orchestrated with significant engagement between various stakeholders.  

Apart from the above, it is also imperative that the government continues to assist in increasing the sales velocity of electric cars by continuing to provide an attractive and long-term PiCG incentive framework. As of today, the future of the plug-in car grant incentive remains uncertain.  

Hyundai Taps EV Startup Canoo To Develop Electric Vehicles 

Hyundai Motor Group said it will jointly develop an electric vehicle platform with Los Angeles-based startup Canoo, the latest startup tapped by the automaker as part of an $87 billion push to invest in electrification and other future technologies.  

canoo electric car

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Time is of the essence, as the global electric vehicle gallops faster towards mass-adoption.  However, most global automotive companies failed to recognise early on the inevitable paradigm shift from internal combustion engine (ICE) to emission-free electric driving.  With the EV inflection point visible on the horizon, the ill-prepared OEMs are scrambling to get a piece of the action.  Hyundai is just one case in point.  In 2020 we will witness many such JV announcements as large OEMs are forced to depend on innovative start-ups to secure a future.  However, it is a win-win approach as younger companies like Canoo need all the assistance they can garner to develop further, scale and lead.  Canoo can leverage the depth of Hyundai’s operational and market experience, along with a large balance sheet, to gain competitive advantage in the intensely competitive EV sector.  

We at e-zoomed are more than happy to assist you with all your EV needs to include:

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Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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