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Outlander PHEV remains most popular ultra-low emission vehicle

The data has been released by the RAC Foundation following analysis of DVLA figures, and shows that there were 12,066 Outlanders licensed at the end of Q2 2015, compared with 9,773 at the end of Q1 2015 – a 23% increase.

By comparison there were 9,310 pure battery-powered Nissan Leafs, a 13% increase on the 8,274 figure three months earlier.

Third in the list of licensed vehicles that qualify for the Government’s Plug-in Car and Van Grants is the BMW i3 (2,484, up 14%).

Overall, at the end of Q2 2015 there were 35,241 vehicles on the road in the UK that were eligible for the grants, a rise of 19% on the Q1 2015 figure of 29,673. However, this is down from the 38% growth during the previous quarter.

To put these numbers in perspective, in the UK there are 30.9m cars and 3.7m vans. Therefore those vehicles licensed and eligible for the plug-in car and van grants make up 0.1% of the total: roughly 1 in every 1,000.

Commenting on the figures, Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “The success of the Outlander looks to be down to three things: a high-profile advertising campaign, good range, and probably most importantly competitive pricing which makes it as affordable to buy as the diesel equivalent.

“But that price is dependent on the government grant. Ultimately all ultra-green cars will have to stack up commercially when the grants are withdrawn. What ministers must ensure is that both consumers and manufacturers have a clear idea of when and how the scheme will come to an end.

“It is worth noting that the growth in the number of ultra-low carbon vehicles on the road slowed significantly in the latest quarter compared with the previous. This is probably due to seasonal variations in car buying volumes but industry and ministers will be keeping a keen eye on the trends to make sure demand isn’t stalling.”

List of top 20 vehicles on the road either currently or previously offered with Government plug-in grants – as of Q2 2015

Rank

Make and Model

Q2 2015

Q1 2015

Q4 2014

1

Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (all variants)

12066

9773

5273

2

Nissan Leaf

9310

8274

6838

3

BMW i3

2484

2186

1534

4

Renault Zoe

2062

1621

1356

5

Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrid

1439

1395

1324

6

Vauxhall Ampera

1250

1226

1169

7

Tesla Model S

1047

903

698

8

BMW i8

823

546

279

9

Renault Kangoo ZE

719

693

663

10

Nissan e-NV200 (all variants)

705

518

399

11

Audi A3 e-tron

570

300

66

12

Peugeot Ion

368

376

368

13

Volkswagen Golf GTE

350

4

0

14

Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid

336

301

241

15

Volvo V60 Plug-in Hybrid

299

275

232

16

Mitsubishi i-Miev

252

254

266

17

Smart ForTwo Electric Drive

215

216

205

18

Citroen C-Zero

205

206

202

19

Mercedes-Benz S500 Hybrid

138

76

14

20

Chevrolet Volt

125

123

124

 

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.