As readers of this blog may know, I am spending 3 months in the UK this ‘summer.’ It was difficult to visit last year due to the coronavirus pandemic and I was last here 18 months ago.

One of the more obvious changes I’ve noticed is the presence of electric cars on the roads, especially Tesla.

Photo Jordan Brierley

In 2020 UK electric car sales were around 110,000 units and looking at various sources I estimate Tesla has around 14% share. According to the stats they were not the leader, that accolade has gone to VW with around 20%.

However, on the road, I have hardly seen any electric VWs, either the ID3 or the newer ID4. I cannot say the same for Tesla. I am staying in rural Norfolk, hardly the electric capital of the world, yet have seen many in these parts too. On the motorways I have seen many more.

Tesla’s UK models are coming from California currently, however there are some signs it may shift source to its new China plant. Some models in France have been shipped from China.

There is much press coverage of Tesla’s new German plant, where planning delays and objections are pushing back delivery schedules. Certainly the UK Government, and the energetic mayor of Teesside, who has reached out to Musk directly, are hoping to persuade Tesla to build in the UK.