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DfT data shows big surge in hybrid and electric vehicles used in Taxi and PHV sectors


Image credit: LEVC

The latest data on fuel types used by taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs) in England reveals a considerable shift towards more environmentally friendly options.


As of 31 March 2023, petrol and diesel vehicles remained the dominant fuel type, accounting for 77% of the taxi fleet and 53% of the PHV fleet. However, hybrid vehicles represented 22% of taxis and 40% of PHVs, while battery electric vehicles made up 0.8% and 6.4% of the respective fleets.

A comparison with the period between 2020 and 2023 shows a positive trend towards cleaner fuel alternatives. The proportion of taxis using petrol and diesel has decreased from 89% in 2020 to 77% in 2023. In contrast, hybrid vehicles have witnessed a doubling in usage, rising from 10% to 22% during the same period. Similarly, battery electric vehicles have experienced a significant four-fold increase, growing from 0.2% in 2020 to 0.8% in 2023.


Analysing the PHV fleet, the figures indicate a similar but slightly different pattern. The proportion of PHVs using petrol and diesel decreased from 65% in 2020 to 53% in 2023. Hybrid vehicles have seen a slight increase from 34% in 2020 to 40% in 2023. The most significant growth has been observed in battery electric vehicles, which have multiplied eight-fold, surging from 0.8% in 2020 to 6.4% in 2023.

Compared to the overall car fleet in England, taxis and PHVs exhibit distinct fuel usage patterns. As of December 2022, 93% of licensed cars were petrol and diesel, 5.3% were hybrid, and 2.0% were battery electric vehicles. This indicates that both the taxi and PHV fleets have a higher proportion of hybrid vehicles (22% for taxis and 40% for PHVs) while having a lower proportion of battery electric vehicles (0.8% for taxis and 6.4% for PHVs) compared to the overall car fleet.


Furthermore, petrol cars were significantly less common in the taxi fleet (2.7% of all vehicles) and the PHV fleet (5.9% of all vehicles) than in the overall car fleet (59% of all vehicles). Conversely, diesel vehicles were more prevalent in the taxi and PHV fleets than in the overall car fleet.


The data suggests that diesel and hybrid electric vehicles are more popular within the taxi and PHV sectors compared to the car fleet as a whole, while petrol vehicles are less prevalent. Moreover, a higher proportion of taxis (14%) and PHVs (6%) are electric or range-extended electric vehicles compared to the overall car fleet (2.1%).


These statistics indicate a positive trend towards greener transportation options within the taxi and PHV industries. The continued growth in hybrid and electric vehicles showcases the industry's commitment to reducing carbon emissions and embracing alternative fuel technologies.

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