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Numbers of hybrid and electric cars in Malaga province have doubled

Non-polluting cars are seen more often on the roads nowadays. :: SUR
Non-polluting cars are seen more often on the roads nowadays. :: SUR
  • This year more environmentally-friendly vehicles have been registered in Malaga province than anywhere else in Andalucía

Once again, official statistics show that people in Malaga province have the ability to adapt to change, in this case with regard to mobility. The number of hybrid and electric vehicles registered in the province so far this year has doubled , compared with the same period last year, according to the Association of Spanish Car and Lorry Manufacturers (Anfac) and the Malaga Motoring Association (AMA). Nor is that all: Malaga is also the area with the highest number of ecological vehicles and the highest percentual growth in Andalucía.

With regard to mixed petrol-electric vehicles, sales have risen from 660 to 1,280 vehicles in 2017 so far, which is an increase of 94 per cent. Meanwhile, 85 totally electric cars were sold, (compared with 42 last year), a rise of 102 per cent.

In both cases, the figures are still low in comparison with the total number of vehicles registered, which was 22,676 in the first nine months of the year. Of those, only six per cent were ecological. What is significant is that there is a clear upward trend, and sales are above the national average, which is five per cent.

Compared with the rest of Andalucía, only Seville's figures are similar to those for Malaga, although slightly lower, with new registrations of 1,147 hybrids and 62 electric vehicles. Seville is followed by Cadiz, with 830 hybrids and 37 electric vehicles. The other provinces in Andalucía are lagging far behind.

Nationally, 40,644 hybrids have been bought, and 5,342 with an exclusively electric motor. Over the country as a whole, growth in this sector is 83 per cent .

There is no detailed information available about the most popular models in Malaga province, but it can be extrapolated from the national figures. In terms of zero emission vehicles, more Renault Zoe, Nissan Leaf and BMW i3s were sold than any other. For hybrids, the market leader is Toyota, as four of its models top the list of the most popular vehicles of this type: Auris, C-HR, Yaris and Rav4. The list only contains one other make, which is Kia's Niro model. However, the rechargeable hybrids should not be forgotten, and the most popular of those is the Mitsubishi Outlander.

Carlos Oliva, the president of AMA, says there are several reasons why these vehicles are so successful in Malaga. The first is the 'Zem2All' programme, which made the city a laboratory for alternative mobility. “It created familiarity; in Malaga electric cars were seen in the streets before anywhere else, and that helped,” he says. It also meant that public chargers were installed, many of them inside municipal car parks in the city centre. “You don't see that elsewhere in Spain,” he explains.

Another key factor is the large foreign population on the Costa del Sol, who already knew about these cars and who are more aware when it comes to buying clean technology. In addition to these factors, Carlos Oliva stresses the “cosmopolitan character” of the people of Malaga, compared with other provinces where they are more reticent.

He also says that the motoring industry is aware that progress towards electrification is “unstoppable,” and this has been reflected at the most recent motor shows. “It's only a matter of time until a high percentage of vehicles include electrical propulsion,” he says, although in his opinion the hybrids still have a long way to go in the market “until new technology can be applied to the batteries,” because they are still unable to travel far before needing to be charged. Carlos does, however, see a future for purely electric vehicles in the the shared mobility sector in large city centres, for short journeys.

hybrid vehicles were registered in Malaga province between January and September this year.

totally electric cars have been sold this year in Malaga, twice as many as the same period in 2016.

new cars and 4x4s have been registered in the province so far this year.