Alphabet, the fleet management and leasing company, is predicting electric vehicle sales to more than double over the next three years from 4,200 to 10,000 units, with increased demand from fleets.
The predicted growth is still a small percentage of the total market, but Alphabet argues that the involvement of mainstream brands like Renault, Peugeot, Citroen, BMW, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Volkswagen and Ford in the EV market, is helping to support credibility and drive interest in the sector after a slow start.
Paul Hollick, chief commercial officer at Alphabet, said: “From our perspective, the tide is certainly turning in favour of electric vehicles.
“The recent Autumn Statement (December 5, 2013) launched a further £5 million investment for public sector fleets to embrace EV technology, while driverless cars are also moving firmly up the agenda.
“One of the key drivers for change has been the introduction of practical and desirable EV models from respected and trusted mainstream automotive brands. There is still a way to go in terms of charging infrastructure in the UK; however, many of the traditional barriers to EV ownership are now falling, as costs come down and manufacturers invest in battery life and range. We’re confident that, with support from the corporate and public sectors, the adoption of EVs will more than double, from 4,200 to 10,000, over the next three years.”
The Nissan Leaf has led sales of EVs in the UK, with 3,000 units sold since it first went on sale in 2011.
The figures show the Leaf has taken the highest percentage of sales in the UK for electric vehicles as the Government’s statistics show that as of September 30, 2013, 5,702 claims for a £5,000 contribution have been made through the Plug-in Car Grant scheme since January 2011.
Nissan launched the second generation version of the Leaf in May 2013 and the brand said it sold 1,300 units within six months.
The £5,000 Plug-in Car Grant can be used by customers when purchasing the following vehicles:
Ford Focus Electric
Renault Fluence ZE
Smart fortwo electric drive
Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid
Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid