Surge in demand paves way for new plug-in hybrid vehicles

NALSPA (National Automotive Leasing and Salary Packaging Association)

The list of new plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV) set to hit Australian roads is growing as the vehicle type rises in popularity, according to the National Automotive Leasing and Salary Packaging Association (NALSPA).

BYD has today launched the Sealion 6 mid-size SUV – among the latest low emissions and more advanced PHEVs set to enter Australian showrooms.

It comes as the latest Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries data show SUV and passenger PHEV sales have more than doubled (138 per cent increase) between April 2023 and 2024. In April 2024 PHEVs represented over a quarter (26.8 per cent) of all electrified sales of SUVs in Australia.

NALSPA’s own figures also show that demand for novated lease PHEVs has almost trebled in recent months – well up from the middle of 2023 when PHEVs represented just six per cent of all novated lease electrified sales.

NALSPA chief executive Rohan Martin said the expanded availability of new models combined with government incentives are driving demand for PHEVs in Australia.

“It’s never been more affordable and accessible to buy a plug-in hybrid vehicle in Australia – and it’s driving demand. A range of new PHEVs have already hit Australian roads this year with more in the pipeline, plus the government’s FBT exemption is providing the added incentive for motorists,” Martin said.

“The FBT exemption for PHEVs is providing a meaningful discount for working Australians to now afford these cars and the new low emissions technology they bring. As motorists navigate cost-of-living pressures, they are discovering that the exemption and salary packaging of their vehicle can save them thousands of dollars every year – not to mention savings on fuel too.

“It’s worth noting that BYD’s Sealion 6 SUV is fitted with advanced super hybrid technology which means electric power can be used more than in older PHEV models. Indeed, since the government’s FBT exemption was introduced, we’ve seen PHEV technology rapidly evolve to allow longer electric driving ranges.

“SUVs are incredibly popular in Australia – the fact that PHEVs represent a significant percentage of electrified sales highlights the attractiveness and choice that plug-in hybrids offer to motorists. A wider range of larger family or work vehicle types are currently available, or will be in the near future, in the form of PHEVs compared with pure EVs.”

NALSPA has also welcomed the Private Senator’s Bill introduced into the Australian Parliament by Senator David Van this week to extend the current FBT exemption for PHEVs beyond April 2025.

“NALSPA supports an extension to the FBT exemption for PHEVs given this low emissions technology is critical to decarbonising Australia’s carfleet as motorist acceptance of electric cars continues to evolve.

“PHEVs are an important stepping stone to going fully electric and suit motorists in particular who drive long distances, and they’re the perfect way for motorists to test the water with EVs who might not be ready to go all in.

“A number of Australians are not yet ready to make the jump to full battery electric vehicles, often citing evolving charging infrastructure and concern over driving range across such a large country. But they would consider a PHEV or a hybrid vehicle as a stepping stone to going fully electric.”

“As PHEV technology continues to advance it will benefit Australian’s outside of the urban centres who must travel longer distances with less access to charging infrastructure. An extension of the exemption provides equitable access to these advances for all Australians no matter where they live”.

List of some of the new SUV or pick-up PHEVs that have been confirmed or will likely be available in Australia include:

  • BYD – Shark Ute
  • Chery – Tiggo 7, Tiggo 8 and Tiggo 9 Pro
  • Chery TJ-1
  • Chery – Omoda 7
  • Cupra – Terrama
  • Ford – Everest
  • Ford – Ranger
  • GAC – ES9
  • Geely – Galaxy L7
  • GWM – Haval 6
  • Hyundai – SantaFe

/Public Release.