Sales of electric vehicles in the UK rose significantly last year, according to new industry figures that also reveal the new car market recorded its best year since 2007.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said that 2.26m vehicles were registered in the UK in 2013 – a 10.8% rise on 2012.
Some 32,727 hybrid and electric plug-in cars were registered, representing an above average rise of 17.5%.
The SMMT also notes that in 2011, plug-in vehicles only accounted for 4.7% of all alternative fuel vehicle sales. This increased to 12.3% in 2013. The sales of pure electric cars, meanwhile, went up by 99% this year when compared to 2012.
Of these newly registered vehicles, 3,584 were eligible for the government’s plug-in car grant. That means 6,942 motorists have now benefitted from the £5,000 grant since its launch in January 2011.
Last year, the government revealed plans to distribute £37m to local authorities, NHS trusts, train operators and similar organisations to offset the cost of installing the electric vehicle charging points on their properties and streets.
Transport minister Norman Baker said at the time that he hoped the initiative would “give greater confidence to those who are considering making the switch to electric.”
Research published in July 2013 predicted that sales of EVs will rise by more than 200% by the end of the decade.