Rewind a decade. Back in 2011, after several false starts, the electric car industry was beginning to make progress. Although Ford still ruled the roost with the Fiesta and Focus topping the sales chart in the UK, a quiet revolution was beginning with the launch of the first mass-market electric car, the Nissan Leaf. The Government had launched an electric car grant scheme and the Tesla Roadster was available to buy for just shy of £88,000.
Numbers of electric car sales were however, still tiny. The public was nervous about making the leap and little wonder … data from the European Alternative Fuels Observatory shows that the number of EV charge points per 100km of road in the United Kingdom was just 42 in 2011. Combine that with reduced range (around 100-120 miles) and the chances of running out of charge were undeniably real.
Returning to 2021 and we now have a completely different electric picture. Ranges are now comfortably three times greater and charge points number over 30,000 across the UK. A recent survey we conducted showed that 85% of drivers could survive on a single charge per week. Moreover, the Government’s Road to Zero strategy includes the launch of a £400 million charging infrastructure fund and a commitment to end the sale of petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030.
2020 saw the biggest annual increase in electric vehicle registrations and as of April 2021, the UK had more than 245,000 electric cars on the road plus 515,000 plug-in electric vehicles. Here at Tusker, almost all of our company car drivers have either an electric or hybrid car and we encourage our salary sacrifice drivers to go electric too. Over 70% of our eligible employees have a car on the scheme and only two non ULEV cars have been ordered since 2019.
Since coronavirus, there also appears to have been a global shift in environmental and social awareness. Global electric car sales rose by 43% despite an overall slump in car sales during the pandemic. Companies are increasingly aware of their corporate social responsibility and the question employers are asking us more than any other is how to switch to a green fleet.
So what is the EV future and how will it affect you?
If the revolution started a decade ago, 2021 is the year where we reach a tipping point. Major industry players are announcing ambitious growth plans, like Volkswagen who predict that 70% of their European vehicle sales will be battery electric by 2030. UBS have already predicted the end of the ICE (internal combustion) age and Jaguar Land Rover announced a ‘complete renaissance’ of the brand with battery-powered versions of all models by the end of the decade.
With every brand focusing on its range of EVs, the good news for the consumer is that we’ll soon be seeing even greater choice, greatly reduced charging times (even batteries capable of achieving a full charge in five minutes) and hopefully reduced costs.
Now the revolution has started, it’s a question of when, not if, you’ll go electric. Here at Tusker, we pride ourselves on our range of electric and hybrid options. We are market experts and ready to find what’s right for you.