According to analysts at Cornwall Insight, there was a significant gap in sales of electric vehicles (EV) between the UK and European Union countries last year. While EV battery sales in EU countries grew by 60.6% between July 2022 and 2023, the growth rate in the UK was more moderate at 31%.
The consultant identified several factors that contributed to this difference. High inflation and energy prices, along with reduced incentives in the UK compared to other European countries, have hampered EV sales. Furthermore, the lack of infrastructure, with only one publicly available charging point for every 11.3 EVs in the UK, acts as a barrier to adoption.
The delay in implementing the ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars in the UK could also affect the country’s transition to EVs. The recent decision to postpone the ban may reduce the urgency and may affect EV demand in the coming years.
However, the UK plans to introduce a mandate requiring a certain proportion of car sales to be electric from next year. From 2024, 22% of cars sold in the UK should be electric, and this percentage is expected to rise to 80% by 2030.
Car manufacturers and industry bodies are divided on whether this order will help or hurt the UK EV market. However, this is an important development to follow as the country seeks to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles.
In short, the widening gap between UK and European EV sales highlights the need for the UK to address factors such as inflation, energy prices, incentives and infrastructure to catch up with the rest of the world. Europe in transition to electric vehicles.