Number of new electric cars in Ireland rose by 45% last year

Latest CSO data shows continued decline in diesel while petrol stayed strong

The number of new electric cars registered in the State rose 45 per cent last year, the latest data from the Central Statistics Office showed, as diesel continued to decline in popularity.

The total new car market was up 16 per cent over the year, with a total of 117,424 new cars licensed for the first time. December saw a rise of 23 per cent in the number of new cars registered, with 65 per cent of those electric.

Overall, the number of new cars licensed in 2023 rose by 16,075 compared to 2022, with Toyota coming out as the most popular brand. The Hyundai Tucson was the most popular model, with the Toyota Corolla, Toyota Yaris, Kia Sportage, and Volkswagen ID.4 rounding out the top five.

Some 19 per cent of new cars in the market were electric vehicles, up from 15 per cent in 2022. The Volkswagen ID.4 was the most popular electric car model, beating the Tesla Model Y into second place.


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Only 22 per cent of new cars were diesel in 2023, down from 27 per cent in 2022. However, petrol cars continued to gain sales, with the number of new cars licensed in 2023 reaching 38,746 compared with 30,627 a year earlier, an increase of 27 per cent over the year.

“Today’s figures from the CSO show the continued growth in the number of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles licensed in Ireland. The number of new electric cars licensed has increased by 45 per cent from 15,462 in 2022 to 22,493 in 2023,” said Nele van der Wielen, statistician in the transport section of the CSO. “At the same time, the number of new diesel cars is decreasing. In 2023, 25,938 new cars licensed were diesel cars compared with 27,185 in 2022.”

There were also more used cars registered in 2023, with the total rising 8 per cent to 50,381. The fuel types showed a similar pattern as new cars, with diesel engines down 6 per cent year on year to 15,365.

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist