UK drops out of Top 5 in Electric Vehicle (EV) preparation index

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New research from LeasePlan has revealed the UK is lagging behind European leaders in its electric vehicle preparation. The annual index has revealed the UK has lost its 2018 position within the top five, dropping down to seventh, with Germany, Sweden and Austria now more prepared for the electric vehicle revolution.

Despite this, the UK currently holds the 3rd position for the number of EVs registered, with the increased deployment of charging infrastructure ranking the UK 5th (18,158), behind the Netherlands (83,196), Germany (37,405) and France (34,558). The top three countries with the highest charging plugs per population ratio were the Netherlands (4.8 charging plugs per 1,000 inhabitants), Norway (4.5) and Luxembourg (1.9). In comparison, the UK only has 0.27 charging plugs per 1,000 inhabitants.

LeasePlan’s EV Readiness Index 2019 is a comprehensive analysis of the preparedness of 22 European countries for the electric vehicle revolution. The Index is based on four factors: the maturity of the EV market (including plug-in hybrids), the maturity of EV infrastructure, government incentives and LeasePlan’s experience with EVs in each country. 

Steve Jones, Strategy and Transformation Director at LeasePlan UK, said: “The UK has been making great progress in its electric vehicle strategy, but it unfortunately lacks the momentum countries like Norway and the Netherlands have.

“If we hope to keep up with the rest of Europe, then urgent action needs to be taken to speed up the rollout of charging infrastructure, increase Government tax incentives as well as boost the number of EV models available. Without improvement on all three of these elements, the UK will continue to slip further down the rankings

“Given how quickly the nature of mobility is changing, more regular and short-term reviews are necessary to ensure the UK’s strategy is aligned to how consumers and businesses are utilising transport services. The Road to Zero strategy is a good starting point, but as a nation we need to be bolder in our plans to reduce carbon emissions and prepare for the future of transport.”

Highlights from the research include:  

  • Compared to last year, all 22 countries in the LeasePlan EV Readiness Index 2019 have shown an improvement in EV readiness, mainly due to a greater availability of new EV models with longer ranges and improved charging infrastructure.   
  • Finland (+7 places), Germany (+4) and Portugal (+4) improved their ranking significantly, as a result of better charging infrastructure, a higher percentage of EV registrations and more attractive government incentives. 
  • EV market share is now in the mid-single digits in the UK (2.4%), the Netherlands (5.1%), Finland (5.2%) and Sweden (7.6%), while Norway remains the undisputed leader with EVs accounting for 53% of all newly registered vehicles.  
  • The Netherlands has the most public charging plugs available (83,196), followed by Germany (37,405) and France (34,558). When adjusted for population size, the top three countries are now the Netherlands (4.8 charging plugs per 1,000 inhabitants), Norway (4.5) and Luxembourg (1.9). In comparison, the UK only has 0.27 charging plugs per 1,000 inhabitants.
  • Austria, Ireland, Germany and the Netherlands scored the highest in terms of government support for EVs, including purchase subsidies, registration tax benefits, ownership tax benefits, company tax benefits and VAT benefits.
Chris Price
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