Oct 15, 2015

  • UK plug-in hybrid sales rise 226.5 per cent, from 4,300 to 14,041 so far in 2015
  • Mayor of London Boris Johnson unveils new Outlander PHEV (plug-in hybrid electric vehicle) at Mitsubishi Motors head office, Tokyo
  • Mitsubishi Motors in the UK invests £48m in facilities and creates hundreds of new jobs thanks to PHEV success

TOKYO - On the day the Mayor of London Boris Johnson unveiled the new Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV in Tokyo, latest new car sales figure analysis has shown booming demand for plug-in cars.

Some 20,992 motorists have made the leap to plug-in hybrids and EVs so far in 2015 with the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV topping the charts, outselling its nearest rival by more than two-to-one.

Campaign group Go Ultra Low has analysed the latest sales figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and has today revealed plug-in hybrid sales especially are up 226.5 per cent, compared to 2014.

The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has won 9,303 sales so far this year, and with the new model unveiled today by Mr Johnson at Mitsubishi Motors head office in Tokyo, that looks set to be increased even further.

Mr Johnson said: ‘This car proves that the technology is there and I hope it will give great encouragement to the consumer to think that mass production of vehicles like this is now bringing the price down to an affordable level so by 2020 when in London we have the first ultra low emissions zone, cars like the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV will qualify.’

Mr Osamu Masuko, Mitsubishi Motors Corporation Chairman and CEO, added: 'We greatly appreciate the significant progress the Mayor's initiatives in London have made to encourage the uptake of ultra-low emission vehicles. We are very proud that the Mayor has taken this opportunity to unveil our new Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV here in Tokyo today.’

In line with a trend seen throughout this year, registrations of ultra low emission vehicles continue to grow their share of the market, accounting for more than one per cent of car sales so far this year. That is up significantly from the same period in 2014 when 0.44 per cent of registrations were plug-ins.

The government anticipates that five per cent of new car registrations (around 100,000 units) will be ultra low emission by 2020 – an expectation that appears on track in light of recent rises.

Lance Bradley, Managing Director, Mitsubishi Motors in the UK, said: 'The Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV along with forward looking and consistent Government policy on incentives is creating a market for plug-ins that will ultimately set the UK apart in global terms, by delivering the right balance of low emission driving, value for money, economy and practicality. This new model is another bold step in that direction.'

The new Outlander PHEV will see more job opportunities and investment by Mitsubishi Motors in the UK. Around 400 new job opportunities have been created since Mitsubishi introduced the Outlander PHEV in 2014, and this will grow to more than 1000 during the next three years with the new model.

The new jobs include network sales people with specialist skills in ultra-low emission vehicle technology; additional people at the headquarters in the UK; and additional people to prepare the cars once they arrive at the final assembly area at Portbury, Bristol – a facility in which the company has now committed £48m.

The Mayor of London’s initiatives such as an ultra-low emission zone in London and his drive for more plug-in vehicles in the city have contributed to the success of the Outlander PHEV.

Head of Go Ultra Low, Poppy Welch, said: ‘The growth in plug-in car registrations is excellent news and in line with our expectations. This trend should continue over the course of this year as we know that motorists are keen to achieve maximum miles for the lowest cost, while minimising emissions and environmental impact.’


A full set of photography and B-roll video footage to support this release is available to download at

Rank Ultra low emission vehicle 2015 year-to-date registrations 2014 year-to-date registrations
1 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV 9,303 2,731
2 Nissan LEAF 4,285 2,969
3 BMW i3 1,564 874

*Sources: SMMT, Go Ultra Low