September EV sales stats smash records

Almost 22,000 pure-electric cars were sold in September 2020, smashing the previous best monthly figure, according to the latest figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.

The new record of 21,903 almost doubles the previous best, set in March earlier this year. September traditionally sees high new car sales because of the new number-plate launched, but few expected such a high electric car figure.

EV stats - September 2020

In fact, September's electric vehicle sales continued what has been a year to exceed all expectations, even factoring in the coronavirus pandemic. Factor in the 12,400 plug-in hybrid sales and more than 34,300 plug-in cars were registered last month.

That PHEV sales figure is also a record, almost doubling March 2020's previous record of 6,818, so naturally the combined electric vehicle sales statistic in September is a new record at 34,303 units - the previous best was a little over 18,500.

EV sales graph - September 2020

Market share - traditionally a statistic that struggles in March and September figures because of the high outright sales - have dipped compared to recent totals, but pure-EV market share remained more than twice the figure of anything seen prior to 2020.

September's pure-EV market share was 6.7% of total new car sales, and becomes the third highest pure-EV share to date. Add in PHEV's 3.8% market share, and the combined electric vehicle share comes in at 10.5% - again the third best total the UK has seen.

Pure-electric models saw an increase of 184.3% compared to September 2019's sales, and PHEVs had similar success at 138.6%. Market share for each this time last year was 2.2% and 1.5% respectively, so pure-EVs have tripled their market share since Sept 20, ad PHEVs more than doubled it.

Putting 2020 into some context, 2019's 12-month new electric vehicle sales total was 72,700. However, 2020's nine months sales have already reached almost 109,000 EVs sold.

SMMT figures - September 2020

Pure-electric registrations in 2020 to date - 66,610 - have almost matched the combined total of pure-EV sales for the whole of 2017 (13,597), 2018 (15,474), and 2019 (37,825) combined.

These figures are all in stark contrast to the rest of the UK car market. September 2020 was down 4.4% on last year for total new cars registered, and the traditional petrol and diesel sectors dropped 21% and 38% respectively.

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Chris Lilly

Author:Chris Lilly
Date Updated:5th Oct 2020

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