After September’s highest ever sales of electric vehicles, the latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show that October was also a positive month for plug-in vehicles, especially battery-electric vehicles (BEV).
Although October’s figures don’t quite reach the heights of September, they show that interest in electric vehicles remains high, with sales of BEVs and plug-in hybrids (PHEV) increasing compared with October last year. In contrast, sales of all other types of vehicles showed a marked decline when compared to the same period in 2020.
Indeed, sales of BEVs showed an impressive 73.1% increase on October last year, with PHEVs increasing by 7.5%. Taken together, this means that the market share of plug-in sales in October reached 23.1%, the highest of any given month this year.
At the other end of the scale, sales of diesel vehicles dropped most dramatically, showing a more than 66% drop. Sales of petrol vehicles also decreased by over 30%.
October 2021 saw a total of 24,537 new electric vehicle registrations, comprising 16,155 BEVs and 8,382 PHEVs. This takes the cumulative total of plug-in vehicles on UK roads – as of the end of October 2021 – to over 675,000. That total comprises around 345,000 BEVs and 325,000 PHEVs.
So far in 2021, there have been more than 141,000 sales of BEVs in the UK, with over 95,000 sales of PHEVs.
The month’s sales saw market share grow again for plug-in vehicles, which made up 23.1% of overall vehicle sales. So far in 2021, this means that plug-in vehicles represent 16.6% of market share, with BEVs at 9.9% and PHEVs at 6.7%. The three figures have continued to rise steadily throughout the year.
While no plug-in vehicle made it into the top ten bestsellers in October, there is good news for those using electric cars to get out and about.
Nearly 1,000 new EV charge points have been installed at supermarkets in the last 21 months, according to data analysed by Zap-Map and the RAC. This takes the total number of EV charger units on their sites to 2,059, up 85% from 1,112 in January 2020. It also means that nearly 8% of all the UK’s 26,000 publicly accessible charge points are located at supermarkets – up from 6.5% in early 2020.
Looking ahead, InstaVolt has announced an expansion of its Banbury charging hub, which will take the site to 16 rapid chargers and make it one of the UK’s largest charging hubs serving the motorways. Zap-Pay partner ESB Energy is also set to significantly expand its network of rapid and ultra-rapid electric vehicle charging infrastructure across the UK, through a new agreement with Zood Infrastructure.