London mayor Boris Johnson has cancelled plans for the £25 congestion charge for "gas guzzling" SUV
8 July 2008

London mayor Boris Johnson has cancelled plans for a £25 congestion charge on so-called ‘gas guzzlers’ in the capital. Johnson had committed not to introduce the £25 charge in his original mayoral manifesto. The Greater London Authority will pay £400,000 in legal costs back to Porsche, after the sports car maker challenged Ken Livingstone’s original legislation in court.Porsche plans to give the money to Skidz, a charity that offers youngsters training in mechanical skills and maintenance. The charity will use the money to set up a branch in London. Today the mayor’s office claimed that settling with Porsche out of court was the “most cost effective way” to end the scheme.Boris added that he was pleased Porsche planned to donate its legal costs to charity. “I am delighted that Skidz will use the money to offer training for young people in the capital," he said. In a statement, Porsche claims that Boris Johnson’s legal team agreed that previous mayor Ken Livingstone was acting beyond his powers by tabling the £25 charge. In particular, the German sports car maker had cited evidence from Kings College, stating that the £25 charge would actually increase overall CO2 emissions in the capital. Andy Goss, Managing Director of Porsche Cars Great Britain, said; “We were always confident that our legal case was right and that we would win in the end. The charge was clearly unfair and was actually going to increase emissions in London. Porsche is proud to have played a decisive role in striking down such a blatantly political tax increase targeting motorists.”The move has sparked outrage and condemnation from the Green Party.

Will Powell

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9 July 2008

Excellent result. Let's hope future charges take into account 'all' the expert evidence and advice and result in a far fairer scheme.

Since all cars cause congestion and this is a congestion charge, then all cars should pay. Whether some cars pay more due to emissions then this will have to be worked out in a far more fairer way. Sounds like a few more studies are needed to find the correct approach. I hope Red Ken is proud of himself for costing Londoners hundreds of thousands of pounds of tax payers money for nothing, for creating a system that ignored the facts and just pandered to his personal views.

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