UK registrations of ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEV) have increased four-fold over the past 12 months, new research shows.
Sales of alternatively-fuelled vehicles (AFVs), such as electric cars and plug-in hybrids, increased by 58 per cent year on year in 2014, with 51,739 new vehicles registered. Meanwhile, ULEV sales rose from 3,586 in 2013 to a whopping 14,498 in 2014, according to new figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
There is now more AFV choice than ever before; more than 20 plug-in models are now on the market compared with just six in 2011, while each of the UK's ten biggest selling car manufacturers now have a ULEV in its range, theguardian.com reports. AFVs accounted for 2.1 per cent of the market share in 2014, up from 1.4 per cent in 2013.
At the beginning of 2014, deputy prime minister Nick Clegg launched a £2.5 million campaign to encourage the UK to embrace ULEVs.
He said: "The extremely low running costs of these cars help drivers save money. Electric cars are one of the most promising of our green industries and we want to secure the UK's position as a global leader in both the production and adoption of these vehicles."
Nissan's all-electric Leaf was the UK's biggest seller in the AVF market, shifting 4,051 units in 2014. That amount is more than double its sales in 2013, and twice as much as any rival model, businessgreen.com notes.