2021 is the most successful year in Electric Vehicle adoption history, with more new battery electric vehicles registered than the previous five years combined. 3,190,727 new Battery Electric Vehicles hit the road in the UK, plus 114,554 plug-in hybrids, meaning 18.5% of all Manufacturers new cars registered in 2021 are plug-in. In addition, the 147,246 registered hybrid electric vehicles gained another 8.9% market share in a year of record electric vehicle registrations, with 27.5% of the total market now electrified in some form.
More than 40% of models are now available as plug-ins, after manufacturers have invested billions of pounds in new technology. In fact, customer preferences for these emerging technologies are shifting rapidly, with Battery Electric Vehicles gaining a record monthly market share of transactions in December, accounting for 25.5% of all new registrations.
The UK is Europe’s third-largest market for new car registrations as of 2021, but the UK is the second-largest market for plug-in vehicles by volume and the second-largest for Battery Electric Vehicles.
However, it is only ninth in Europe’s overall Battery Electric Vehicle ranking by market share, underscoring the progress still to be made, even though the UK has one of the most ambitious goals of any major market to end sales of gasoline and diesel vehicles by 2030.
Despite supply shortages and the impact the pandemic has had on the auto market, interest in electric vehicle development is only going to grow.
Maserati has announced it will be fully electric by 2030. The manufacturer also announced that it will offer battery-electric versions of all its vehicles by 2025.
Ford has announced plans to sell more than 600,000 electric vehicles by 2026. The manufacturer also announced that by 2030 it will only sell fully electric vehicles in Europe.
Peugeot has announced that it will also have pure electric vehicles in Europe by 2030.
Nissan, on the other hand, plans to continue offering full-hybrid models, while everyone else is committed to going all-electric. By 2030, the manufacturer hopes to offer both electric and hybrid vehicles.
Likewise, Toyota plans to achieve at least 50 percent electrification by 2030 and expand its product range based on customer demand.
Subaru has partnered with Toyota to build its first all-electric SUV.
Sony announced in January that it would launch its own electric car.
Some manufacturers have begun investigating the ways in which these obligations could affect other sectors of the transportation industry.
Earlier this year, General Motors announced plans to release generators powered by manufacturer Hydrotec’s hydrogen fuel cell technology. The chargers can be installed at existing service stations and charge up to four vehicles simultaneously, with an estimated target full charge time of 20 minutes.
Not only are these generators capable of replacing gasoline and diesel generators, but they also eliminate the need for permanent charging stations. These generators can also be used as backup power during a power outage.
The executive director of GM’s global Hydrotec business said the company’s vision for an all-electric future is not limited to passenger cars or even transportation; the manufacturer plans to study how this new Hydrotec technology can be used in aerospace, aircraft, locomotives and heavy-duty trucks.
As manufacturers make grand plans to get involved in electric vehicles, some are also looking inward. In addition to announcing a comprehensive plan to go all-electric in Europe by 2030, Ford also announced its latest initiative, the Electric University, a program designed to educate dealers, salespeople and service technicians in all aspects of electric vehicles.
This move not only eases a common pain point when trying to sell Electric Vehicles; it also educates dealers about the benefits of investing in Electric Vehicles and committing to sales to meet the manufacturer’s ambitious goals.
The company will run a multi-day training program near its headquarters to immerse selected employees in the world of electric vehicles. Details haven’t been released, but the chairman of Ford’s National Dealer Council has mentioned that it will include an explanation of ownership interests and performance differences between electric and combustion-engine vehicles.
As the electric vehicle industry continues to grow and develop, these initiatives and commitments open up conversations elsewhere in the industry. From education and training programs to efforts to integrate all of the transportation industry, it will be interesting to see how the next big thing in the market spills over to the rest of the industry and drives what the market really looks like.
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