Comment: SMMT sees August boost for EV market

Colin Walker is availble for interview and further comment.

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By George Smeeton

Information on this page correct as of:

Figures released this morning by the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders [1] show that one in five new car sales in August were electric. Taken together, electric cars and hybrid electric cars account for half of all new car sales, whilst the market share for petrol and diesel slumped to historic lows.

Commenting on this figures Colin Walker, Head of Transport at the Energy & Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU), said: “Less than five years ago, electric cars accounted for less than 1% of new car sales. Today, one in five cars new cars sold in the UK are battery electric. This is a huge increase in market share over a very short period of time.

“Sales are ahead of industry forecasts, as drivers seek to access the benefits and savings that come from EV ownership. And once they’ve made the move to electric, surveys show that the vast majority have no intention of going back.

“With sales booming, the challenge for Government is to keep this growth on track by sticking with the petrol and diesel phase out dates, and push ahead with introducing its Zero Emissions Vehicle mandate in 2024. This will continue to drive up new EV sales which, ultimately, will drive the growth of the second hand EV market through which most drivers will be able to access EV ownership.

“The mandate will also car manufactures and investors the policy certainty they need to build a car industry fit for the future. With 80% of cars made in the UK exported, if we fail to make the switch as the world does, our ability to sell abroad will diminish putting the whole car industry in jeopardy.”

Notes to editors:

  1. August boost for EV market but regulatory uncertainty threatens future ambitions:

For more information or for interview requests:

George Smeeton, Head of Communications, ECIU, Tel: 07894 571 153, email: