The UK’s electric vehicle market performed superbly compared to the rest of the market, against a backdrop of falling overall sales hit hard by the coronavirus outbreak. In the first full month of lock-down, pure-EVs were down just 10% in April 2020 – taking 32% market share – whilst all other fuel types were down more than 90%.
April 2020 saw just 4,321 models registered, a figure not entirely surprising considering the UK was in full lock-down throughout that period. As such, outright sales were down more than 97% for the month compared to April 2019.
Pure-electric models performed better in just about every area than any other fuel type. Total sales were topped by petrol cars, but other than that, pure-EVs triumphed.
Table courtesy of SMMT
The drop in sales was significantly less than other types of car, and pure-electric models were behind only petrols in the terms of registrations, beating diesels, PHEVs, hybrids, and mild hybrids.
The top-10 best selling models were topped by two pure-EVs for the first time, with Tesla’s Model 3 (658) in first place and the Jaguar I-Pace (367) in second. Their combined 1,025 units accounted for 24% of all cars registered in April, and helped EVs to its market share of 32% for the month.
Suffice to say, this market share is a new record – and by a huge margin. The previous record of 4.6% for pure-EVs and 7.3% for combined plug-in sales was set in May and was a significant improvement on previous figures.
However, April’s 32% market share for pure-EVs and 34% for combined plug-in registrations is a dramatic increase on anything seen before.
It’s all to be tempered by the fact that these figures come in strange times, but EVs have certainly resisted the impact of lock-down better than any other vehicles.
It’s not completely unexpected however, as waiting lists for pure-electric models are often lengthy in comparison to other cars, and this back-log will have caught up a little during this period of low sales. A concertina effect was anticipated to a degree, but April UK registrations have proven far more resilient than anticipated.
Figures for May will be equally interesting to see, and will depend greatly on whether any lock-down restrictions are lessened/lifted in coming weeks. It is hoped that EVs continue to perform strongly, and market trends indicate that buyers are looking at electric models greater than ever before.