Cuts to grants 'affecting sales of electric cars in the UK'

Register for our monthly newsletter

Why not register to receive our Monthly Newswire? Once a month we'll send you an email packed full of essential business news and handy tax tips to help save you money.

Sign up today

14 May 2019

A report published by the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (EAMA) has suggested that sales of electric cars in the UK are being affected by the government's decision to reduce the grant for buyers of so-called 'green' vehicles.

In the Autumn of 2018, the government made the decision to slash the grant for buyers of electric cars from £4,500 to £3,500. In addition, incentives for plug-in hybrids were abolished.

The EAMA suggested that demand for electric cars in the UK has been 'sluggish'. In addition, the report revealed that EU motorists bought 'twice as many' eco-friendly cars as British drivers in 2018.

When compared to their petrol and diesel counterparts, eco-friendly vehicles often cost more to purchase. However, separate research carried out by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) revealed that, over a period of four years, electric cars are ultimately cheaper to own and run. 

Commenting on the issue, Mike Hawes, Chief Executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), said: 'If the UK is to achieve its ambitious electrification targets, a world-class package of incentives and infrastructure is needed. The recent reduction in plug-in car grant for zero-emission cars and its total removal from plug-in hybrids means the UK's offer has become less competitive.'