Interest in electric cars hits record high on Auto Trader

Enquiries about electric cars have seen a dramatic surge on the UK’s Auto Trader online marketplace.

With pump prices of petrol and diesel reaching record highs, both new and used electric cars are proving a big draw for consumers.

Auto Trader saw 12.4 million advert views for EVs in the first quarter of 2022, which represents a 65 percent increase on the past year.

EV interest growing at a frantic pace

Auto Trader EV Enquiry Interest© Provided by Motoring Electric Auto Trader EV Enquiry Interest

However, Auto Trader witnessed a new all-time high on Tuesday 14 June, with 35.8 percent of all new car enquiries sent to dealerships being for a battery-electric car.

More than a third of enquiries about new cars is considerable, but the pace at which interest in EVs is growing is remarkable, too. The previous week (7 June) saw EVs account for 22.5 percent of leads, compared to 21.7 percent in the week of 14 May.

Twelve months ago, electric cars accounted for only nine percent of enquiries on 14 June 2021.

Used electric cars are also selling significantly faster than any other fuel type. In May, used EVs took an average of 26 days to sell, compared to 35 days for diesel cars, or 33 days for petrol cars. In May 2021, electric cars took an average of 48 days to sell.

Major savings for making the EV switch

Auto Trader EV Enquiry Interest© Provided by Motoring Electric Auto Trader EV Enquiry Interest

The cost of fuel is likely to be the key driver behind motorists making the switch to an electric car.

Auto Trader estimates that EV owners with the ability to charge at home can make a major saving compared with running a petrol or diesel car. Based upon current fuel prices, it believes drivers could save £176 per 1,000 miles in running costs.

Ian Plummer, Auto Trader’s commercial director, said: “As well as a huge spike in the volume of leads being sent to retailers, one in every five advert views on our marketplace is currently for an EV. With the average family petrol and diesel car costing over £100 to fill up, it’s no surprise that we’re seeing a surge in interest for more cost-efficient alternatives. 

“And whilst the up-front cost of a new or used EV will place them out of reach for many buyers, the potential saving of around £176 per every 1,000 miles with a domestic charger – which is only set to increase – will ensure electric demand only heads in one direction.”


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