DEMAND for electrified vehicles continued to grow, accounting for almost four in 10 (37.8%) new cars reaching the road. Battery electric vehicle uptake swelled by 72.3% to secure a 20.1% market share, an August record and the highest recorded since last December.
Plug-in hybrid uptake also rose significantly, by 70.0%, to account for 7.7% of new registrations. Hybrid volumes remained relatively stable with a 6.8% increase, comprising 10.0% of the market.
However, with less than four months to go until the expected introduction of a Zero Emission Vehicle Mandate, industry still has no sight of the proposed regulation. The automotive sector is committed to Net Zero but the diminishing time threatens the ability of the market to move.
Demand from both business and private consumers must be boosted still further if ambitions are to be met, but while businesses benefit from fiscal incentives to switch, there is no similar package for the private consumer market.
Nick Williams, Managing Director, Lex Autolease, part of Lloyds Banking Group, added: “Following last month’s stellar electric vehicle (EV) registration numbers, the transition to electric has seen further success as the summer comes to a close, with another 85,657 vehicles registered in August.
“Results from the government’s consultation on the Zero Emissions Vehicles mandate are set to be announced imminently, helping to map out the UK’s electric future and ensure we’re able to deliver on our commitment to net zero.
“It’s essential that the responses are used to build a robust mandate that paves the way for further investment and innovation in EVs and makes the UK an attractive place for manufacturers to launch and sell the electric models that will help meet our Net Zero targets. It’s also the hope of the industry that the mandate is firmly backed up with essential investment in the charging infrastructure and continued financial incentives that will encourage consumers to opt for a lower emissions vehicle.”
The new car market grew 24.4% in August with 85,657 new vehicles registered, according to the latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). While August is typically a quieter month with many buyers choosing to wait until the September numberplate change, an increase of 16,799 units means the sector is now entering a second year of growth. Despite this improved performance, the market still remains 7.5% below pre-pandemic levels.