Electric cars becoming more popular with West Sussex drivers as ranges increase and prices decrease
Electric car technology is advancing rapidly, and the latest figures suggest that West Sussex is getting on board the green revolution.
From October 2017 to September 2018, the number of registered plug-in vehicles in the area increased by 41 per cent.
The latest Department for Transport statistics show the number of registered electric or plug-in hybrid cars, vans and micro cars (called quadricycles) in West Sussex for each quarter of the year.
From July 2017 to September 2017 there were 1,233 electric vehicles.
However by the latest quarter, from July to September 2018, that figure had grown to 1,742, a jump of 509.
That is lower than the increase of 1,770 in Peterborough, which has the highest percentage of plug-in vehicles of any local authority in the United Kingdom, but back in 2013 there were just 100 electric cars in West Sussex, which shows the progress the industry has made in a short time.
Over the past few years manufacturers have increased the range of their vehicles and prices have lowered, helping fuel the rise in environmentally friendly vehicles.
The latest Nissan Leaf, the UK’s most popular entirely electric car, can now travel 235 miles before it needs to be recharged, 80 miles more than the previous version.
Over the next year BP will install charging points at its petrol stations, following Shell’s roll out in 2017.
Dyson has also said it plans to release an electric car by 2020.
One advantage electric car users have over other vehicles is they do not have to pay road tax, as they do not release any emissions.
Electricity is also far cheaper than petrol and diesel, and green drivers have the satisfaction of helping save the planet.
However, in November the Government reduced the maximum discount electric car buyers could get from £4,500 to £3,500.
Plug-in vehicles still make up a tiny percentage of the cars on the road in West Sussex.
Compared with the 1,742 electric cars on our roads, there are 511,177 cars and vans in total, according to the latest complete vehicle registration data from 2017.
• Report by Ralph Blackburn, data reporter