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REVEALED: Number of Northamptonshire drivers who swapped petrol and diesel for electric vehicles in 2021

New figures have revealed more motorists in Northamptonshire ditched gas-guzzlers in favor of clean, green electric machines last year.

But Auto Trader warns battery-powered cars are still too expensive for many to make the switch as the Government plans to phase out petrol and diesel cars by 2030.

Department for Transport figures showed there were 3,427 battery-electric vehicles registered in Northamptonshire at the end of last year – up from 1,904 at the end of 2020, an 80 percent rise.

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Experts say more charging points are needed to help encourage drivers into making the swap to electric vehicles

It meant more than 1,500 electric vehicles were newly registered county-wide during 2021. Of those, 752 where in West Northamptonshire where the total number now sits at 1,897, while another 771 were in North Northants, taking the total to 1,530.

Across the UK, the number of electric vehicles on the roads almost doubled from 215,000 at the end of 2020 to 420,000 last year.

On average, an electric car will emit around one-third less carbon dioxide than an equivalent petrol or diesel car, Transport & Environment, a European clean transport campaign group, says.

Auto Trader’s commercial director, Ian Plummer, said the automotive industry has responded well to the Government’s electric car drive, adding: “Over the last year, we’ve seen significant strides in range capability, as well as a growing choice of makes models and body types.

“Right now there’s one new electric vehicle coming onto the market per week.”

But he also stressed the need to further invest in charging ports, saying drivers must have confidence in being able to charge their cars to help make the transition from fossil fuels.

The Government hopes to install 300,000 public charging points by 2030, 18 times the number a decade previously.

There is also concern regarding the price of electric vehicles, which still represent a small share of the overall automotive market.

Mr Plummer said. “With the average electric vehicle costing around 30 percent more than traditionally fueled alternatives, they remain out of reach for all but the most affluent car buyer.”

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