Our roads are populated by electric cars more so than ever before, but the UK remains to be falling behind other countries in the race for an all-electric nation. Norway and Germany are both on their way to reach set goals and tackle air quality issues – planning to eliminate petrol and diesel cars by 2025 and 2030 respectively. On the other hand, the UK has planned to ban the sales of all non-electric cars by 2040, a huge 10 years after Germany.
Together with Vindis Group, a VW dealership, this article explores how electrical vehicles are reducing CO2 emissions and what the future holds for the more environmentally friendly car.
EV market statistics
- According to com, the number of new registrations of electric vehicles has risen from 3,500 in 2013 to 85,000 by the end of 2016
- Registrations of new electric vehicles hit a 12-year high in January this year, reaching a record 4.6% share in UK new car registration, up from 3.6% in November 2016
- Globally, the electric market has accelerated past the two million mark, with China, USA and Europe accounting for more than 90% of the electric vehicle sales in 2016
Electrical vehicles and CO2 emissions
Depending on the type of electricity used to charge the battery, electric cars have the potential to drastically reduce carbon emissions in the atmosphere. They are only as green as their ‘juice’ is. Batteries which are powered by coal do nothing to cut emissions – it’s the natural gas electricity power that helps to reduce CO2 emissions. Natural gas electricity can result in less than half of the total emissions of the best combustion vehicle, including the manufacturing processes. With petrol and diesel cars known for their contribution to air pollution because of their carbon emissions, it’s no surprise that countries are planning to stop the production of petrol and diesel cars in the future.
The rise of the electric vehicle
Previously, sales of electric cars struggled to compete with petrol and diesel cars. In 2013, just 3,500 new electric vehicles were registered. However, the market has shown promising progression in the past few years. One indication of the electric vehicle growth might be seen in the huge shift away from diesels that’s underway across Europe, where its market share has fallen by 3.6% over the last year.
Alongside falling diesel shares, electrical vehicle sales began to thrive. Back in 2014, on average around 500 electric vehicles were registered per month – compared with 2017, where in the first seven months of the year, almost 26,000 cars have been registered, averaging just over 3,700 cars per month. It’s a dramatic increase on 2014’s figures.
The future of our roads
The surge in electrical vehicles on the UK’s roads looks to continue. If plans to eliminate petrol and diesel cars in the UK by 2040 are anything to go by, cities of electric cars will be cleaner and quieter than our present roads.
To achieve this, the negatives of the UK electrical vehicle industry must be addressed. This means lighter batteries with longer amounts of charges and quicker charging periods being required across all models. Thankfully, some models with these points in mind have already started to appear on the market and global investment should ensure the progress continues.
To address the rising interest in electric vehicles, large motor brands have revealed plans of their own EV models. BMW and MINI revealed new electric plans in July, confirming the MINI EV. Mercedes have also announced their plan to enter Formula E, with the likes of Audi, BMW, Porsche and Jaguar as they attempt an all-electric racing series too.
It’s time for the UK to put a strategy into action, address the industry downfalls and work towards higher air quality. If plans are to go ahead as scheduled, petrol and diesel vehicles will be taken off sale from 2040, meaning electric-only vehicles will be all that are sold on the market. This is something both drivers and brands need to keep in mind within the years approaching 2040.