UK Plug-In Car Grant Running Low On Funding



The future of incentives for plug-in cars is uncertain.

The Plug-In Car Grant in the UK lightened the purchase of plug-in electric cars for probably around 170,000 customers, but according to media reports, it’s now uncertain what the future will hold due to insufficient funding.

Initially, consumers were able to get up to £5,000 and in the most recent years £4,500 for BEVs and £2,500 for PHEVs with a £60,000 price cap. Each category had its own all-electric range requirements.

UK  Plug-in Car Grant (from 2016):

Category 1 – cars with zero emission range of 70 miles or more and CO2 emission below 50 g/km. (£4,500, no price cap)

Category 2 – cars with zero emission range 10-69 miles and CO2 emission below 50 g/km (£2,500, £60,000 price cap)

Category 3 – cars with zero emission range 20 or more miles and CO2 emission 50-75 g/km (£2,500, £60,000 price cap)

If the funding for subsidies will not be secured on a sufficient level, incentives could shrink. BEVs will get maybe £3,500 with a price cap of £60,000, while plug-in hybrids will not see any incentive.

The price cap for BEVs, of course, will have an important impact on brands like Tesla or Jaguar, but the more affordable BEVs would still get some boost.

“The Treasury is being warned that emergency funds will be needed to avoid an imminent cut in the subsidies given to people buying plug-in cars, which some fear will dent Britain’s green credentials.”

“Business department insiders believe that the cuts could be reversed with a relatively small amount of money. The current budgets for the plug-in grant scheme are £124m for 2018-19 and £96m in 2019-20.”

Market share of plug-in cars in the UK stands at over 2.2% this year with a peak of over 4.2% in August.

Plug-in Electric Car Registrations in UK – September 2018


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5 Comments on "UK Plug-In Car Grant Running Low On Funding"

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The not so green Government like to slash incentives for all things eco, just like they have done for solar generation. However when it comes to oil they try and push that all they can with year after year of tax freezes when they should be gradually increasing taxes to persuade people away from fossil cars. I knew they were a joke when they announced their target of 2040 for ending fully fossil cars, even Scotland has it as 2032 and they don’t have the amount of air pollution that you get in the south east of England.

As they are currently incentivising cars with 10 miles AER, that would be a nice way to start slashing if cleaner air is the intention
Besides BEV, only PHEV with high AER should be eligible, but as Volt is not sold in GB and BMW i3 REx won’t be availabe either in Europe soon, there are none that qualify. Thus, make it BEV only.
As for the price cap £60 k is almost 80 k$. That should buy a nice Model 3 even in the UK when the right hand drive version comes out.

Plug-In hybrid cars will sell regardless with a minimal drop in sales. It is the BEVs that need to keep the insensitive.
The grant has been extended before and so will probably be extended again.

Now that all these alibi-PHEVs — which made up a majority of British plug-in sales — are not eligible any more thanks to WLTP, the problem should pretty much solve itself…

Does Category 3 really get the same incentives, in spite of being considerably more lenient?… If so, that’s certainly something to get fixed.