Plug-In Electric Car Sales In UK Continue To Grow – December 2nd Best Month Ever

JAN 14 2015 BY MARK KANE 15

Nissan LEAF in the UK

Nissan LEAF in the UK

December 2014 was the second best month ever in terms of plug-in electric car sales in the UK.

2,114 registrations (2,141 according to data in the SMMT table here) is seven times more than in December 2013 and allows plug-ins to take over 1.27% market share.

For the year 2014, registrations reached 14,498, four times more than in 2013.  Average market share for the year is rising – 0.585%.

Mitsubishi stated that the Outlander Plug-in was the best-selling plug-in car in the UK, without revealing numbers though:

“The Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-in electric vehicle has been the major highlight of the UK car market in 2014. Its introduction has transformed the plug-in market, which it now leads by a significant margin, accounting for nearly half of all FYTD sales.”

As we know from previous stories, Nissan LEAF had 4,051 registrations (55% market share of all-electrics).

There are now over 23,000 plug-in electric cars in the UK.

2014: the year of the alternatively-fuelled vehicle

2014: the year of the alternatively-fueled vehicle

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15 Comments on "Plug-In Electric Car Sales In UK Continue To Grow – December 2nd Best Month Ever"

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I kinda thought PHEVs(Volt) would be big in the USA and pure electrics would be big in Europe(Leaf).

But no, pure EVs are bigger in the USA (Tesla and Leaf) and PHEVs are bigger in Europe(Outlander).

But I suspect PHEVs will catch on more in the USA when someone ships an SUV PHEV in the USA. (And my conspiracy theory continues to be that they don’t want to do that because the profit margins on a PHEV SUV will be much smaller than a conventional ICE SUV.

For UK, it’s simple. The 5000 GBP rebate is available to both pure EV and PHEV cars. The 10 GBP daily congestion charge in London is also waived for both PHEVs amd BEVs. Given the even playing field, the economics and practicality of PHEVs handily beats BEVs.

Only Norway is the BEV heaven. PHEVs will win there too, once they get similar incentives as EVs. It will change next time though; else Norwegian sovereign fund will be out of money soon.

France is the other BEV heaven, but unlike the Norwegian market, about a third of French sales correspond to all-electric vans (actually, most of these sales are Kangoo ZEs).

And the Netherlands is the PHEV heaven, driven by the Outlander PHEV.

Good points. Don’t know why Mitsubishi is not bringing Outlander PHEV to US yet. It should sell very well.
It seems, Mitsubishi was a no show at NAIAS.

Mitsubishi needs to do a complete redesign of the Outlander PHEV’s OBD-II system (on-board diagnostics) before CARB and EPA will allow it to be sold in the U.S.


Well, the $7500 Fed tax-credit goes to both the Leaf and the Volt (although the Energi cars and PiP get smaller ones due to smaller batteries).

BUT, I suspect that Georgia tax-credit only goes to BEVS.

Don’t know about Georgia. But in California ( biggest EV/PHEV market),
i) BEVs get $2500 VARB rebate; PHEVs get $1500.
ii) BEVs get guaranteed white HOV stickers. PHEVs get green HOV stickers which keeps running out of quota. Only recently it got raised by another 15K.

I think 90% of Leaf owners have 3 year lease, and lease prices are very low. The lower price is a factor for commuters. Many Leaf owners already complain about losing significant range after 2 years.

America: I saw a woman fill up an SUV for $53 dollars, and that’s at gas prices of $2.25. America SHOULD buy the Mitsu SUV, but are we Smart Enough?

I think No.

$53 on a tank… that’s almost for free.

Also, Leaf is popular in US due to extremely low lease prices (sometimes less than $150/pm). The gas savings alone paid for its cost untile the recent tumble in gas prices. I suspect, Nissan is losing money or barely breaking even on incremental production costs.
I haven’t see such low prices on the Volt and Toyota PIP, yet they sell comparable volumes in US.

BEVs will begin to beat PHEVs and ICEv everywhere by 2025 because the cost of an electric powertrain will fall below that of an ICE powertrain and the charging infrastructure will be more than sufficient in the developed countries and China,and the developing world will not be far behind.

Add the complexity,weight and space requirements of two powertrains and it is a no brainer.

BTW Mitsubishi and Volvo don’t have much ICE SUV sales to cannibalize in the USA. The culprit for Mitsu is again battery cell constraints.

The Leaf costs more than pretty much any other similar hatch back in the market the Outlander costs about the same or less than other mid-to-top end SUV’s after the government grant. The tax difference between a Leaf and another hatch is not that much but between a mid-to-top end SUV and the Outlander PHEV it’s huge.

Unless you are doing a big motorway drive almost daily you would have to really hate the Outlander PHEV to buy something else.

I think being in the beginning of this transition phase to electric some interesting side effects will occur that will alarm and concern some powerful interests.
For example the impending demise of the status quo in the oil patch. Also those associate industries will suffer from reduced demand, and those politicians that rely on such industrial support to stay in power. Putin for instance.
So some growing pains but well worth it as we transition away from fossil fuels.

Reports of British PEV figures usually are limited to cars and vans eligible for the Plug-in Grant. The Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) reported that 23,083 claims have been made through the Plug-in Car Grant scheme (includes cars and vans). This figure is consistent with the 23K reported by Inside EVs.

But, according to the source below, if those PEVs not eligible for the grant are accounted for (such as Tesla Roadster, Mercedes S500 PHEV, etc – see the complete list of eligible models here:, the actual stock of plug-in electric vehicles in the UK is about 24,500. By the end of December 2013 the PEV fleet was about 8K, so the PEV market in the UK really skyrocketed in 2014. It was about time.

check here:

Just Auto published Outlander PHEV sales in the UK. With 5,370 units sold in 2014, the Mitsu is effectively the top selling PEV in the UK for 2014, with the Leaf ranking second with 4,051 units (as you reported)

See here: