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As the EV market enjoys its most substantial growth period of all-time, we'll be providing a bi-weekly roundup on some of the most important and hottest topics surrounding the electric car market. Below are five of the biggest stories on electric cars and hybrid cars today. 

Changing our lifestyles: Electric cars 'best option' for up to a fifth of UK car drivers

A new research study conducted by leading motoring outlet What Car? found that electric cars are the 'best option' for up to a fifth of UK car drivers. The release of the study comes during a boom period for EVs - which has seen sales and demand skyrocket in the UK over the past 12 months.

The data, which analysed 8,000 users of What Car?'s Fuel Calculator, found drivers could now use an electric car as their first car without needing to compromise on their normal routine.  The results confound electric car skeptics, for whom range and reliability are of chief concern. 

However, with the average UK driver doing fewer annual miles alongside the ever-increasing range of electric cars available on models such as the new Nissan Leaf, VW e-Golf, and Tesla Model 3, the argument for the switch to battery power is gaining significant ground.

The unrelenting charge: Electric car sales accelerate growth

More on those staggering EV growth stats: car sales data revealed by the SMMT in October 2019 show electric car sales have increased by over 150% year on year, with approximately 3,162 new EVs registered in the month.

It's perhaps no surprise to see electric cars enjoying such incredible monthly growth - up to 125% more electric cars have been sold so far in 2019 when compared to the year prior.  This growth represents the only area of the market on an upward trajectory, with car sales of both petrol (-3%) and diesel (-28%) declining year on year. 

End of an era? Honda intends to remove diesel in Europe by 2021 

Big news this week as Japanese giant Honda announces that it will phase out all of its current diesel cars by 2021. Its been a torrid year already for diesel, sales of which have declined 26% for 2018/19.

The news that Honda may park its diesel cars for the last time comes from a Reuters report which says Honda will move away from the combustion engine in the next two years, in order to make its vehicles fully electric by 2025. The Honda-E is already the first example of the brand shifting its focus onto battery power and its safe to say Honda has several more in the pipeline.

Check your charging! Why you might not be getting the most from your PHEV

If you're a business with a company fleet of cars pulling their hair out at the mounting costs and inefficiency of your EVs on the road, it's likely you could be suffering from failing to charge these cars properly. 

In data published by Fleet Logistics UK, the huge benefits and whole life cost savings when driving PHEVs in both electric and conventional petrol engine mode, rather than just on the combustion engines were highlighted. 

Fleet Logistics found, using the example of a 330e BMW 3 Series Auto, fuel consumption could drop from 176.60mpg to just 50.40mpg if the electric motor is not employed and drivers continue to just use petrol. This reduction in fuel economy is likely to mean vastly inflated running costs for the company car driver and businesses alike.

Powering on: UKs Plug-In car grant to continue until at least 2020

The highly popular Plug-In Car Grant, which subsidises drivers with up to 35% of the purchase price for zero-emission cars (up to a maximum of £3500), will remain in place until at least 2020.

Fears were raised earlier in the year that the ascent of electric to the single largest growth area in the UK car market would result in the Government scrapping the scheme which was introduced to try and accelerate the takeup of EVs. 

The last major revision to the grant was in 2018, when, to much criticism, the Government ended support for 'Plug-In Electric Hybrid Cars' stipulating that the grant would only apply for cars with CO2 emissions below 50g/km, and an all-electric range of up to 70 mph.

Speaking at the BVRLA Parliamentary Reception, Andrew Stephenson MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said that the grant would last until 2020 and "on a personal note, I hope further than that too". 

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David Hughes

Friday, 17/05/2024