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Battery EV sales on track to top National Grid projections

Image: Getty

Image: Getty

Sales of battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are set to exceed National Grid ESO’s projections, according to research from Cornwall Insight.

Figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders earlier this month showed BEVs saw the highest-ever monthly share of new car registrations in August 2019.

In fact, sales increased by 377.5% in comparison to August 2018, from 659 to 3,147.

Further research on those figures by Cornwall Insight reveals that at the current pace of BEV sales, the UK is set to surpass National Grid ESO’s predictions for its Consumer Evolution scenario, outlined in its Future Energy Scenarios 2019 (FES 19) report.

Registrations of battery electric vehicles against National Grid's Consumer Evolution predictions. Image: Cornwall Insight.
Registrations of battery electric vehicles against National Grid's Consumer Evolution predictions. Image: Cornwall Insight.

However, this is only one of four scenarios outlined in the FES 19, with sales not yet at a rate which would reach the levels outlined in the system operator’s Two Degrees scenario, Cornwall Insight said.

BEVs are seeing a spike in registrations for a variety of reasons, explained Jacob Briggs, senior consulting analyst at Cornwall Insight, among which is the alleviation of availability constraints as new models with more attractive, higher ranges come to market.

BEVS registrations have increased by 93% over the course of 2019 and are now "poised" to take over plug-in hybrids, according to Briggs, describing it as an "interesting" time for BEVs as overall new car sales decline.

“It is still early days for the electric vehicle sector against the overall vehicle market, but the increasing EV demand represents significant support to the UK’s decarbonisation ambitions.

“This also provides a positive signal for other parts of the industry, from charge point operators and energy suppliers through to investors and asset providers,” Briggs added.

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