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Government backlash for scrapping electric car grants – Woocarz Car Sales & Finance

Government backlash for scrapping electric car grants

17/06/2022 / Comments 0 / 73 / News 2022
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The UK government is facing a huge backlash for deciding to scrap the £1,500 grant for buying electric cars. The Department for Transport said, “the plug-in subsidy scheme was being closed with immediate effect”. The department indicated further by stating the funding would now be “refocussed” towards improving electric vehicle charging.

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said the move “sends the wrong message”.

Road motoring groups like the RAC warned the sudden decision could “stifle” the ambition to shift most people into electric cars.

The grant which came into practice in 2011, was set up to make the purchasing of new electric vehicles more affordable by offering generous subsidies. What started with a grant of £2,500 was then reduced to only £1,500 in December 2021, and only applied to electric vehicles priced under £32,000. Up to now, the scheme had been used to purchase nearly half a million cars over the past 10 years.


The aim now is to refocus funds toward the infrastructure set up for public charging stations, and the purchasing of electric vans, taxis, and motorcycles. Trudy Harrison, the Transport Minister said: “Having successfully kickstarted the electric car market, we now want to use Plug-in Grants to match that success across other vehicle types, from taxis to delivery vans and everything in between, to help make the switch to zero emission travel cheaper and easier.”

What’s more notable is the UK is bracing for the total ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2030. But many in the industry, including top executives, share the view that the scrapping of the grant “sends the wrong message to motorists and to an industry which remains committed to government’s net zero ambition”. 

In many opinions in the industry, what’s needed now from the UK government is an increase in funding with massive investments in building a solid charging network quickly, if targets are going to be met.


Unfortunately, the timing couldn’t have been any worse with the UK facing dark times after only just overcoming a pandemic. The British public has seen an increase in inflation and it has just been announced by the Bank of England recently that interest rates will go up too. But the most depressing and wallet-busting situation is the record high fuel prices at the forecourts. What’s also ironic is, that the electric vehicle market has seen year-on-year sales growth, so instead of encouraging the industry, things have been made harder with the full withdrawal of funding of £1,500 per electric vehicle. One small shining light for the electric car industry is there are still tax benefits to be had.

There is one organisation that welcomes the government’s new stance, the Clean Cities Campaign. The UK head, Oliver Lord stated, “we don’t need to subsidise industry any longer on this, they know what to do”. He went on to say, “build electric cars competitively or fade away. Public money should instead be put towards a scrappage scheme to help people on low incomes switch out of polluting vehicles, whether going electric or car free.”

Some good news is, that the Department of Transport will honour all existing applications for the grant, and where a car has been sold in the two working days prior to the recent announcement, the sale will also still qualify for the grant.

There is a solution

With things as they stand in the UK economy, for now, maybe the safest bet is to spend less money and look at the used car market. WOO Carz who is based in Southampton, is a family-run used car dealership that stocks a variety of quality used cars, including used hybrids and used electric cars. We would even consider paying off outstanding car finance on your old car if you still have it on finance, just so you are able to successfully purchase a newer used hybrid or used electric car. If you aren’t quite ready to move to hybrids or electric cars, then we offer a wide range of quality used cars that can be purchased online and delivered to your doorstep anywhere in the UK free of charge.

To find out more about our car sourcing service, current deals, and latest offers, call us now on 02382543928 and speak to one of our friendly advisors, or alternatively if you are seeking a quick decision for car finance, click here now and see if we can help you get into the used car of your dreams.

WOO Carz Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority under reference number 626798.


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