10 JANUARY 2022
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Tesla’s Model 3 took top spot in UK car sales for the first time in December (9,612) from MINI (4,625) with Vauxhall’s Corsa third (2,608).
Overall for the year new car registrations grew by a marginal 1.0% on a pandemic-ravaged 2020, with 1.65m car sales according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) with the Corsa taking top spot.
More new battery electric vehicles (BEVs) were registered than over the previous five years combined, 190,727 joining Britain’s roads, along with 114,554 plug-in hybrids (PHEVs), meaning 18.5% of all new cars registered in 2021 can be plugged in. This is in addition to the 147,246 hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) registered, which took a further 8.9% market share in a bumper year for electrified car registrations, with 27.5% of the total market now electrified in some form.
The UK finished 2021 as the third largest European market for new car registrations but the second largest by volume for plug-in vehicles and the second largest for BEVs. It is only in ninth position overall, however, in Europe for BEVs by market share, underlining the progress still to be made, despite the UK having among the most ambitious targets of all major markets with the end of sale of new petrol and diesel cars scheduled for 2030.
Petrol-powered vehicles, remain Britain’s most popular powertrain, accounting for 58.3% of all new cars registered in 2021, with diesel-powered cars making up 14.2% of the market, followed by BEVs at 11.6%, HEVs at 8.9% and PHEVs at 7.0%.
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