A focus on future mobility
Hammond said £390m will be invested in low-emission vehicles, freeing up money for more EV chargers and "building our competitive advantage in low-emission vehicles and development of connected, autonomous vehicles".
He said there'll be 100% of first-year capital allowance on the installation of EV charging points.
Glass's, Europe's largest vehicle data provider, said: "It seems pretty clear that the government envisages us driving around around in largish numbers of electric and advanced hybrid vehicles within five years, which, in our view, is a good match for the rate of development of EV technology. This will probably help to power new car sales."
Hammond said £1bn will be invested in digital architecture with the objective of making the UK a leader in 5G connectivity. This is likely to help with the development of connected cars and could play a part in giving autonomous car systems improved accuracy.
The chancellor confirmed that the UK government will increase its investment in science and technology innovation, something that is likely to have a positive impact on the country's automotive and engineering industries.
The SMMT reacted to the statement today, saying: "We welcome the investment to enhance the charging network for electric vehicles, as well as further support to boost uptake of low emission buses and taxis. These markets are still developing and it's critical the government continues to encourage this through consistent policies and investment. Furthermore, the commitment to connected and autonomous vehicle testing infrastructure is an area in which the UK is already one of Europe’s leading centres. "
"This commitment will help cement that position and promote this next generation technology, which has the potential to transform lives - preventing more than 25,000 accidents and creating more than 320,000 new jobs."
“We are, however, disappointed that the government has not done more on business rate reform. SMMT called for the removal of plant and machinery from business rates valuation, which would have helped encourage further investment at this time of great uncertainty."
Rising insurance costs
Insurance premium tax (IPT) will rise from 10% to 12%. RAC director of insurance Mark Godfrey said: “After a recent double rise in insurance premium tax, this further increase is a slap in the face for motorists, who will surely see their premiums once again increase. It will mean three rises in in two years and a more than doubling of IPT, from 5% to 12%, making IPT the stealth tax of our time.
“Insurance premiums have already risen by over £100 compared with last year and motorists have told us they are feeling the pinch, with 57% telling us that their premiums have increased over the past 12 months," added Godfrey.
Whiplash claim action will save drivers an average of £40 on their annual insurance premiums. This was predicted last week, but the RAC is doubtful that any saving will be felt by motorists.
"We are also concerned that the government’s whiplash reforms, while welcome, will not achieve savings for motorists as only a small number of insurers have so far committed to passing the savings on," said Godfrey.
“The chancellor may now be at risk of encouraging some hard-pressed motorists to break the law by driving without car insurance, which will further increase premiums for law-abiding drivers. We would urge the government in the name of road safety to reconsider this rise.”