Demand for traditional combustion engine cars has crashed to their lowest level in the last 21 years, while sales of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV) have soared. September is traditionally a period when car sales grow because this is the time when new number plates are issued, but this hasn’t been the case in 2020 according to figures published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
Just 328,041 cars were registered in September when the new ‘70’ number plate was issued. Despite this overall slump, electric car and hybrid sales have once again continued to grow in the UK. Electric car sales rose from 7,704 in September 2019 to a massive 21,903 for the same month in 2020. That’s an increase of 184.3 percent.
So far this year 66,611 all-electric cars have been sold, which is an increase of 25,097 compared to this time last year. This is an increase of 165 percent. It shows that people’s attitude towards electric cars has changed during the Covid-19 pandemic and that electric cars now account for 6.7 percent of the car market.
Similarly, the plug PHEV market is doing well with 12,400 new vehicles registered during September. This is a 138 percent increase over the number sold in September last year. So far this year 42,277 PHEVs have been sold compared to 23,015 this time last year. This is an increase of 83.7 percent. Once again impressive figures.
Battery electric and PHEVs now account for more than one in 10 car registrations. The combination of changing attitudes and a wider choice of electric and PHEVs available to consumers are seen as the main reasons for this trend.