Record numbers of motorists are switching to electric vehicles according to new research from the Department for Transport.
Plug-in vehicles are leading the race with a 77% increase for new registrations in 2021 compared to the year before. They accounted for 327,000 car registrations out of a total of nearly 1.7 million.
Hybrid Electric Vehicles were next with 264,000 registrations, a 57% increase over the same time period.
Battery electric made up 11% of all new registrations with 190,000 cars, and plug in hybrids were 7% of the total, some 114,000 motors.
By contrast, there was a 10% fall for petrol cars, and a 36% drop for diesel cars.
Looking over a five-year period, petrol cars decreased by 32% and diesel by 85%. However, 54% of all new registrations in 2021 were petrol cars – 12% were diesel.
Greg Wilson, Founder of Quotezone.co.uk, one of the UK’s leading car insurance comparison sites, comments: “Even though it will be 2030 before the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles in the UK, the pace in the uptake of electric vehicles and hybrids is already impressive.
“Lockdown factors may have played a part, with the shift towards remote working cutting or eradicating commuting journeys, encouraging many to try greener driving solutions that were once not practical.
“However, it’s interesting that over half of all new registrations are still for petrol cars – showing there is still work to do on expanding the electric infrastructure. The rising cost of living and ever-increasing energy prices are likely to slow the move to electric vehicles, so households need further government grants and incentives to help make this green revolution a reality for all.”
Households should check which vehicles are eligible for government grants, which sees up to £1,500 taken off the price of these new low–emission vehicles. There’s also support available to install at home chargers, up to 75% of the cost of installation from the Office for Zero Emission Vehicles.
Average CO2 emissions for cars registered for the first time in the UK decreased by 11% in 2021 compared to a year earlier.