The British government has extended its subsidies for electric cars but is again reducing the subsidy amount. For other electric vehicles, such as vans, trucks, taxis or motorcycles, the subsidy has been extended but the subsidy rates remain the same.
Specifically, the so-called “Plug-in Car Grants” will be extended until 2023, but for electric cars, only grants of 3,000 pounds instead of the last 3,500 pounds will be issued, and this only up to a list price of 50,000 pounds. By the end of 2018, the premiums had already been cut from 4,500 to the aforementioned 3,500 pounds. Despite the designation, plug-in hybrids have been virtually excluded from the subsidy since the 2018 reform (the minimum range is 70 miles), which applies practically only to BEV and FCEV. The new subsidy of 3,000 pounds is effective immediately.
The government said that the reduced subsidy rate for electric cars and the price cap will “allow more drivers to benefit from making the switch for longer”. An opinion not everyone shares. The Association of Car Fleet Operators (ACFO) is disappointed with the decision, according to its own statement, and fears “an enormous impact on many currently popular electric cars”. The £500 cut is “goes against the raft of ‘green’ motoring-related initiatives,” said AFCO chair Caroline Sandall. Other experts generally welcomed the extension of financial incentives, but also called for non-monetary subsidies such as special parking spaces or entry permits.
Subsidies for electrically powered vans, large vans and trucks, taxis and motorcycles were also extended until 2023. There is no cutback here, so that 8,000 pounds for electric vans, 20,000 pounds for large vans and trucks, 7,500 pounds for taxis and 1,500 pounds for electric motorcycles will continue to be granted.
Further changes in funding practice are not ruled out: Depending on how the market develops, the subsidy rates may be reviewed and adjusted over time, the government said. So they will not necessarily remain at this level until 2023. The budget amounts to a total of 532.5 million pounds, of which 403 million pounds for electric cars and 129.5 million pounds for the other electric vehicles.