The government’s electric car plans could backfire because demand will outstrip supply, according to the RAC Foundation.
A survey predicts that as many as a fifth of Britain's 34 million motorists are planning to buy an electric car within the next five years, or would consider doing so.
But the Government acknowledged in their recent 'Low Carbon Vehicles' report that mass-market electric vehicle technology won't be viable until at least 2017.
Director of the RAC Foundation, Professor Stephen Glaister, said: "Ministers' thinking on green technology is all over the place. They talk of incentives of up to £5000 for prospective buyers of electric cars from 2011.
“Yet at that stage there will be almost nothing in the showroom for people to purchase. What the government is in danger of doing is putting the cart before the horse.”
Less than 0.1 per cent of the UK's 26 million cars are currently electric.