EV Sales Soar Amid Chip Shortage, Regulators Warn There's Need for Charging Infrastructure

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Electric vehicle sales soared in 2021, even though the market is still recovering from the effects of the international health crisis. The Society of Motor Manufacturers Traders (SMMT) says the UK registered more electric vehicles in 2021 than in the last five years combined. But still, the regulator warns there’s a need for charging infrastructure.
Even though 2021 will go down in the books as another dismal year for the automotive industry, SMMT figures indicate there were 1.65 million new registered cars. It was a small increment over 2020 figures severely affected by the health crisis.

While the figure was high, BBC states, overall, it is the second-worst figure recorded in three decades, falling 28% compared to pre-crisis levels. A severe shortage of computer chips also crushed any hopes of getting back on its feet.

A modern car needs between 1,500 to 3,000 semi-conductors. These computer chips are vital components in modern automobiles required for emissions control, engine management, airbags, infotainment, navigation, and even braking.

On the other hand, there has been a 75% surge in electric car registration in the UK, from 108,000 in 2020 to 191,000 in 2021. Electric cars accounted for one in every four vehicles sold in the kingdom. The second best-selling car in the country was the Tesla Model 3.

Electric cars made up two-thirds of new car sales in Norway in 2021. Tesla tops as the best-selling brand in the country ahead of Toyota’s hybrid RAV4. Norway hopes to achieve its objective of becoming the first to stop the sale of gasoline and diesel cars. In 2021, Norway sales shot up by 25% to 176,276 vehicles, 65% of which were all-electric.

The Scandinavian country might have the most significant proportion of electric cars with 5.4 million people, but China is the biggest market with about 1.4 billion.

On Sunday, Tesla reported its quarterly deliverables that exceeded Wall Street estimates, overcoming chip shortages as it prepared for China production.
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Editor's note: For illustration purposes, the photo gallery shows images of Lexus lineup during Toyota BEV launch

About the author: Humphrey Bwayo
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Humphrey is a car enthusiast whose love and passion for automobiles extended into collecting, writing, driving, and working on cars. He got his passion for cars from his Dad, who spent thousands of hours working on his old junky 1970 E20 Toyota Corolla. Years later, he would end up doing the same with a series of lemons he’s owned throughout his adult life.
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