The £20 million loaned to Nissan by the former Labour government is under review by the UK’s new coalition as part of £6.2 billion in planned cuts.
The money was loaned to Nissan to partially fund the building of the new Nissan Leaf electric car at its Sunderland plant from 2013.
However, the treasury has announced all spending is under review and reports in several national newspapers have suggested the Leaf loan may be cut to make savings.
“The government is reviewing the loan,” a Nissan spokesman told Autocar, “but as far as we’re concerned we signed an agreement with BIS [Department for Business, Innovation and Skills] that we believe is binding.
“The new government has said it’s committed to a green economy and zero-emission motoring is part of this. We’ll have to wait and see.”
Media reports claim treasury ministers are consulting lawyers on whether loans such as those given to Nissan can be reversed. The previous government also handed out loans to Ford and Vauxhall, both of which will also be reviewed.