The UK’s call for EV incentives: Electric vehicle sales reliant on fleets in February 2024

  • February 2024: UK’s new car registrations surge to 84,886, marking a 14.0% YoY increase.
  • Industry urges government for EV incentives in the Spring Budget for collaboration and support.
  • Shift in the automotive landscape: Rising EV sales and the Zero Emission Van Plan demand comprehensive government measures.

February 2024 sees uptick in EV sales as the industry looks to the Spring Budget for increased incentives

The UK’s new car market has reported its most successful February in two decades. 84,886 new car registrations have been reported; that’s a 14.0% year-on-year surge. Unexpectedly, February 2024 marks the 19th consecutive month of growth, according to the Chief Executive of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), Sue Robinson.

Despite a modest dip of -2.6% in private buyer sales, the automotive sector experienced a significant uptick. This was primarily driven by a remarkable 25.2% surge in fleet registrations. Notably, electric vehicles (EVs) made a noteworthy impact in February. Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) jumped by 21.8% to 14,991 units. Plug-in hybrid (PHEVs) registrations surged by 29.1%, totalling 6,098 units. Hybrids (HEVs) recorded a growth of 12.1% at 10,801 units.

- Advertisement -

However, industry leaders are pressing the government to capitalise on this momentum in the upcoming Spring Budget. Major players are rallying for additional incentives for EV adoption. 

Sue Robinson commented:

“It is promising to see that electric sales continue to grow after a bounce back last month, particularly as OEMs seek to meet the targets set by the ZEV mandate for this year. In recent months, this has primarily been driven by fleet rather than private demand. 

In spite of encouraging progress, it is crucial that the Government continues to work with dealers to attain the best outcomes for consumers.

The Spring Budget provides a prime opportunity for the Government to keep this momentum going. NFDA urged the Government, in its Spring Budget submission, to increase consumer confidence in EVs through price incentives and improving electric charging infrastructure. NFDA also stressed to the Government to prioritise investment and growth in the UK automotive sector.”

The NFDA specifically urges the government to bolster consumer confidence in EVs. This is possible through price incentives and the enhancement of charging infrastructure. Additionally, a plea has been made to prioritise investment and growth in the UK automotive sector.

Industry leaders are calling for change

Recently, a coalition of industry leaders has introduced the Zero Emission Van Plan. The collaboration included the BVRLA, Logistics UK, RECHARGE UK, AFP, and the EV Café. This effort underscores the urgent need for concrete action to achieve the ambitious target of 70% zero-emission vans by 2030.

The call for government action extends further, with the Lords Committee releasing a report emphasising the immediate need for reforms in the UK’s electric vehicle (EV) strategy. Urgent recommendations include cost reduction, acceleration of charging infrastructure, and incentives for EV adoption. These challenges, including low EV adoption rates and consumer concerns, are pivotal to the government’s net-zero target by 2050. Furthermore, Auto Trader, FairCharge, E.ON and Charge UK penned an open letter to the government this week. They called for cut VAT on EV charging to boost adoption.

With the UK at the cusp of a significant shift towards a cleaner transport landscape, the industry’s call for government incentives remains prevalent. As industry players await the Spring Budget, the pressure mounts for the government to embrace these recommendations and steer the nation toward a sustainable future.

Related Articles