There are now more than half a million pure-electric cars on UK roads

More than 38,000 pure-electric cars sold in September


New figures out from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and Zap-Map detail both new car registrations as well as the growth of electric vehicle charging infrastructure for the month of September.

While overall sales of new cars grew by 4.6% compared to September 2021, new registrations of pure-electric cars showed a far stronger year-on-year increase of 16.5%. Indeed, pure-electric cars – also known as battery-electric cars, or BEVs – were one of only three vehicle types in September to increase sales year on year.

However, it’s not only electric cars that have shown an increase. New EV charging statistics from Zap-Map show that there were almost 35,000 total charging devices across the UK at the end of September.

What’s more, certain areas of the UK’s charging infrastructure have shown particularly impressive growth, such as ultra-rapid charging devices, which have seen a 76% increase since September last year.

The Zap-Map graph below shows the number of new battery-electric cars registered each month over the the past 13 months.

september 2022 new pure-electric car registrations

September 2022 saw a total of 50,397 new plug-in car registrations, comprising 38,116 BEVs and 12,281 PHEVs.

This takes the cumulative total of plug-in cars on UK roads – as of the end of September – to over 990,000. That total comprises over 570,000 BEVs and more than 420,000 PHEVs.

september 2022 cumulative pure-electric car registrations

The chart above displays the cumulative number of battery-electric cars in the UK since 2016.

So far in 2022, over 175,600 BEVs have been sold in the UK, alongside almost 74,000 PHEVs.

annual plug-in vehicle market share as of september 2022

Last month’s sales saw plug-in cars take 22.4% of market share, with BEVs accounting for 16.9% of overall car sales in September.

This means that plug-in cars currently represent 20.6% of market share in 2022, with BEVs at 14.5% and PHEVs at 6.1%.

What’s more, the Tesla Model Y came in second spot in the top ten best sellers last month, with more than 8,300 models sold. The Model Y also makes it into the top ten models sold so far this year, coming in eighth with over 20,600 sold in the UK in 2022.

As the number of electric cars on UK roads increases, the latest EV charging statistics from Zap-Map show that 1,126 new charging devices were installed across the country in September. This brings the UK total to 34,860 devices, across 20,888 locations. It also represents a 35% increase in the number of charging devices since September 2021.

Furthermore, last month saw 256 new rapid and ultra-rapid charging devices installed, bringing the total to 6,411. This includes an increase of 76% in the number of ultra-rapid devices – capable of adding from 70 miles in as little as 15 minutes – since September last year.

Looking ahead, Westminster City Council has appointed Siemens to install 500 on-street ubitricity chargers across the borough, while GRIDSERVE has begun construction of its Gatwick Electric Forecourt, expected to open in summer 2023.