New car sales for March were down overall 44% on 2019’s levels. Coronavirus was held responsible for the drop off. However the rise in electric car sales levels approached 200%.
The strong electric showing continued in April with the SMMT’s figures revealing three electric vehicles in the top 10 seller list. The Tesla Model 3 topped the list with 658 units, Jaguar’s I-Pace was second with 367 sold and the Nissan Leaf reached 9th with 72 units.
Admittedly this was against a stark backdrop where total sales dropped by 97.3 % compared with April 2019. And EV’s remain a small proportion of this year’s overall total new car sales at 2.9% but the fact remains that they still experienced a significant rise from 0.8% despite all the turmoil in the wider market. More attractive price points, government incentives, greater choice, improved battery range and the general public’s increasing concern for the environment are likely to have contributed to the strong showing.
This performance could be further aided as calls grow for the ban on sales of new petrol and diesel cars to be brought forward to generate a green way out of the crisis. SSE, one of Britain’s largest energy suppliers is urging decision makers to speed up the switch to EV’s by moving the ban on fossil fuelled vehicle sales to 2030. Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has indicated he may be open to the idea of accelerating the move over. This potentially could include further investment in charging infrastructure.
Should used care dealers be gearing up for buying demand shifting over to EVs in the near future?
With this in mind entrepreneurial used car dealers may want to start gearing up for a significant shift in the stock coming to market and the public’s buying preferences. Taking advantage of the government assistance that’s available to install charge points at their premises could be one future proofing tactic worth looking at?