Previous government's £5000 electric car subsidy may not be backed by the new government

The planned £5000 green car subsidy and government support for the British car industry could be under threat, according to new business secretary Vince Cable.

Cable was speaking at Toyota’s Derbyshire plant for the launch of the new Auris hybrid when he said that the government has not yet made a decision on whether it will implement the £5000 per car, low emissions subsidy that was promised by Gordon Brown’s previous Labour government.

The grant is something many manufacturers say is essential if Britain is to become a world centre for the production of low emission vehicles.

Cable went on to say that Britain’s carmakers were no longer in an “emergency situation”, and the government “can’t go round waving a chequebook at British industry”.

Cable also mentioned General Motors’ plan to build the Vauxhall/Opel Ampera at Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port plant in Merseyside, saying that GM has not yet approached the government for a grant but that such a project “shouldn’t depend on government support” and “we can’t give money to every company that asks for it”.

This comes after the new coalition government secured financial support for Nissan and Ford to further develop new technologies earlier this month.

Tom Gregory

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Comments
23

29 June 2010

From here on in EV hating bloggers will be dancing in the thread!

29 June 2010

[quote Los Angeles]From here on in EV hating bloggers will be dancing in the thread![/quote] Quite. I don't know why they feel so threatened that they state "no-one" will ever buy these and pooh-pooh every piece of news about them. Don't like 'em? Don't buy 'em. Gradually people are going to buy them though, to start with as either second cars, people in large cities, local government vehicle pools, private company vehicle pools etc. So those who don't buy get the benefit of improved local air quality without doing one jot towards it.

29 June 2010

It's a shame that Cable sees the car industry as "not needing" the government's support. The Vauxhall workers (I know quite a few personally) are getting quite excited at the prospect of building the Ampera at the Ellesmere Port plant, and it would just seem 'right', particularly with Britain wanting to be the 'forefront of electric cars'. Same goes for Nissan's Leaf - all this electric car in Britain hype could be very good for the economy. It's a shame some people don't see it that way. Additionally, adding £5000 to a Nissan Leaf would put its price up to around £28000 - that's significantly higher than £23000 with the Government's proposed discount. It's worrying that they don't seem particularly enthusiastic about the whole thing.

"The creative adult is the child who survived."

29 June 2010

do it Vince - £5000.00 subsidy per car, of tax payers money - scandal, don't add to the debt.

29 June 2010

[quote pabs]do it Vince - £5000.00 subsidy per car, of tax payers money - scandal, don't add to the debt.[/quote]

I agree. This £5000 subsidy will go to the affluent middle class Nissan Leaf purchasers of this world. If its going to be spent then use it to take 100+ of the lowest polluting fossil fuelled cars out of roadtax all together.

Better still dont spend it at all. tough love.

29 June 2010

I think they should cap the rebate at less than the Vat paid, so anyone buying one is still making a small contribution. Afterall they will get to drive around on fuel taxed at 5% thereafter instead of the 300% or 400% the rest of us pay

29 June 2010

[quote pabs]

do it Vince - £5000.00 subsidy per car, of tax payers money - scandal, don't add to the debt.

[/quote]

correct.

Only June and already the Leafs are falling - ha ha!

Where's that parasite, banker 'hedgecreep' gone, and his passion for noddy milkfloats in central London? His fervent wish was to buy a 'British-made' milkfloat. Watch how fast Datsun retract the promise to build their Leafs in Blighty once UK govt. pulls subsidy. Sayanara Brit Leaf.

29 June 2010

I agree as well, the carmakers factor all this in when pricing cars, if the subsidy was 10k the Leaf would be a 33k car or 23k after government discount. I was in Copenhagen last week where there is 180% tax on buying a new car. The car makers have to work harder to make cars affordable but they manage it.

29 June 2010

[quote jonfortwo]

[quote pabs]do it Vince - £5000.00 subsidy per car, of tax payers money - scandal, don't add to the debt.[/quote]

I agree. This £5000 subsidy will go to the affluent middle class Nissan Leaf purchasers of this world. If its going to be spent then use it to take 100+ of the lowest polluting fossil fuelled cars out of roadtax all together.

Better still dont spend it at all. tough love.[/quote]

Or how about the British people tell multinational corporations like Renault/Nissan to take a hike and demand that their government uses any cash unallocated to avoid raising VAT, which affects the poorest - non £30k milkfloat buyers - the worst.

29 June 2010

[quote Los Angeles]

From here on in EV hating bloggers will be dancing in the thread!

[/quote]

LOL! Did someone call?

Actually, I imagine that the £5k subsidy could make a lot of sense, in that the full environmental cost of a car is (perhaps) not factored into its purchase price. Therefore if (and I think it's a big "if") EVs are less damaging to the environment in the lifetime of the vehicle then the subsidy needs to be turned on its head. Instead, it would make more sense to increase the tax on ICEs by £2-3k to take into account environmental cost, therefore making EVs more viable at time of purchase. Then the government could waive VAT on EVs for a few years (relative price at same point as a £5k subsidy, more or less) from the proceeds and still be quids in.

But that doesn't change the fact that until I see evidence otherwise, EVs are just unable to meet the needs of many/most of today's motorists, IMHO!

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