Recent Electric Car Grant Cuts – a step in the wrong direction?
A major appeal of electric and hybrid vehicles, for buyers weighing up their next car purchase decision, is the grant that cuts the (often enormous) price tag of electric vehicles. However, the electric car grant cuts make it harder for prospective buyers to part with their money due to the reduction of the incentive.
The government’s department for transport (DfT) has decided to cut discount given to purchasers of all-electric cars to £3,500 (previously £4,500). Not only this but they have also made the decision to completely remove all grants for new plug-in hybrids. This will all come into play on the 9th November. Yes you read this right – less than a month
What the experts think
Most experts on the electric car market think this is a backwards step. Mike Hawes, chief executive of the SMMT motor manufacturers body, was one of the first to disagree with the change. He believes that this change in legislation “sends yet more confusing signals to car buyers” and is “totally at odds” with the government’s goal of removing all petrol and diesel cars from the road by 2050. This decision by the government will certainly impact buyers decisions on whether now is the right time to go eco. This, in turn will negatively impact car manufacturers. Car manufacturers will not sell as many electric cars despite investing an increasing percentage of their budget in this area. Ultimately, this will result in less R&D into more efficient and powerful batteries.
R&D is incredibly important. The more money is invested into EV technology the earlier people will make the leap to electric. Nicholas Lyes, The RAC’s head of roads policy pointed out that this decision is “a major blow to anyone hoping to go green with their next vehicle choice”. With the government’s future plans being increasingly green, this decision certainly looks like a step in the wrong direction. Surely the government should incentivise green cars more not less?
It is probably reasonably clear what my opinion on the subject matter is! With electric cars still out of reach, financially, for many this is an added blow to those who want to go green but just can’t. I believe the UK government should be increasing the EV subsidies not creating electric car grant cuts. Most experts seem to agree, this is an odd decision by the government. Their reasoning behind the decision? They believe the plug-in hybrid market is now established and it is now time to focus on zero-emission models. Cutting the electric vehicle grant by £1,000 is an interesting way to do this in my opinion!
If the government’s electric car grant cuts haven’t deterred you from going green check out my review of the new Jaguar I-Pace!