Consumers move towards electric vehicles and hybrids

The move towards electric vehicles and hybrids is growing at pace, according to a new report.

EV numbers are up six times on last year and the hybrid market has advanced 20 per cent, according to the International Car Tech and Mobility Summit organisers, Electronomous and Mobility X, which reports a sharp consumer shift towards electric vehicles and a healthy growth in the numbers of hybrid vehicles.

In statistics provided by Cartell.ie, the organisers note the price-point for hybrid vehicles has risen in the first two months of 2019 compared with previous years, indicating a consumer preference towards higher specification vehicles in this corner of the market. The overall numbers of hybrids sold in the first two months of 2019 displays a healthy annualised increase of 20 per cent. This growth weighs against the backdrop of a decline in diesel sales – down 23 per cent. Self-charging hybrids are expected to grow to 12 per cent, or one in eight, of new cars sold in 2020.

Electric Vehicles (EVs )

In additional stats provided by Cartell.ie, the organisers note that the price-point for the electric vehicle has settled just above €33,000. Combined with a growth in the numbers of people buying new cars in this price bracket – where prices are more than €30,000 – and the recent consumer trend towards buying an EV, the market could be prime for EV sales in 2020/21. This argument applies equally to hybrid vehicles.

The organisers would expect to see very healthy growth in EVs in 2020 – more than 3,000 units for the first two months of next year is easily achievable and 5,000 units is not impossible. This anticipates EVs being sold at a value in the low €30,000s and the continuing consumer advance towards buying cars in the €30,000 to €40,000 bracket. As Electronomous expects this to be the most popular bracket for new car sales within the next two years this could yield significant growth in EVs over that period as consumers are faced with a like-for-like choice in terms of price, knowing that EVs can yield savings down the line in terms of running costs.

One thing that is open to interpretation, however, is the future market demand outcome – whether demand will move more towards electric vehicles or towards their hybrid equivalents. Self-charging hybrids now make up 7.7 per cent of the car market against 2.2 per cent for EVs. In volume terms, hybrid growth continues on an equivalent level to EVs.

The advantage with the hybrid is that it is much closer to what the average consumer is already familiar with and it fends off so-called range anxiety. The case for the EV turns more on the additional environmental benefits a car of this type delivers (in terms of its day-to-day performance ) and the fact that range anxiety will also become less of an issue as additional battery capacity coming on stream pushes vehicles of this type to deliver more range in the future.

Value and units of Hybrid Vehicles sold first two months of the year 2017 to 2019 (Source: Cartell Carstat )

Date Numbers Average Value

2017-03-01 1976 31340

2018-03-01 3122 31940

2019-03-01 3760 34680

Value and units of Electric Vehicles sold first two months of the year 2017 to 2019

(Source: Cartell Carstat )

Date Units Average Value

2017-03-01 229 26261

2018-03-01 174 40540

2019-03-01 1045 33417

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