Automotive News – Early August 2021

Bentley Motors has posted the company’s 2021 half-year performance, with sales and profit levels unmatched in Bentley’s 102-year history. This includes an operating profit of €178 million, greater than any profit figure posted for a full-year period by the company. Moreover, retail sales increased by 50% from a pre-COVID 2019 figure of 4,785 to 7,199 in 2021.

These sales were well-balanced between the luxury marque’s three model lines, Bentayga (2,767), Continental GT (2,318) and Flying Spur (2,063).

Some of the UK’s largest commercial fleet operators, including Royal Mail, BT and Tesco, have committed to converting their fleets to British-built electric vehicles (EVs) by 2030 at the latest, if the Government can overcome barriers related to grids and charging infrastructure.

Working with the Government’s Electric Vehicle Fleet Accelerator (EVFA), bp, BT, Direct Line Group, Royal Mail, ScottishPower, Severn Trent and Tesco have agreed to work collaboratively to increase the uptake of EVs in the UK.

The companies and EVFA members have committed to converting their fleets to EVs by 2030 and to buying 70,000 British-built electric vans, provided the Government introduces enabling policies,%20AdestraCampaign&utm_medium=email,%20Email&utm_content=news&utm_campaign=dailynewsletter,

More electric vehicles were registered than diesel cars for the second month in a row in July, according to car industry figures.  It is the third time battery electric vehicles have overtaken diesel in the past two years.

However, new car registrations fell by almost a third, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said.

The industry was hit by the “pingdemic” of people self-isolating and a continuing chip shortage.

In July, battery electric vehicle registrations again overtook diesel cars, but registrations of petrol vehicles far outstripped both.  Cars can be registered when they are sold, but dealers can also register cars before they go on sale on the forecourt.

People are starting to buy electric vehicles more as the UK tries to move towards a lower carbon future.  The UK plans to ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030, and hybrids by 2035.

Second-hand car sales in the UK have more than doubled in the last few months due to coronavirus restrictions easing and a shortage of new models.

Year on year, the used car market grew 108.6% in the second quarter, with more than 2.2 million vehicles changing hands, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said.  The number of sales was up 6.6% on pre-pandemic levels in 2019.

Petrol cars made up most of the sales, with uptake of electrics slow.

In addition, increased demand led to a rise in sales of older used cars, with only 12.7% of all vehicles sold being made within the last three years, the lowest on record.

The SMMT said the increase in sales tracked the country’s easing of Covid restrictions, with demand rising as businesses reopened.

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