17.6.2022Government closes plug-in car grant to new orders
The government has this week, 14th June, closed the plug-in car grant scheme to new orders. Instead, the government will refocus funding for use in public charging and the purchase of other road vehicles, such as vans, where the switch to electric requires further development.
The government had already signalled that the plug-in car grant was a temporary measure, confirming funding until 2022-23, although some had hoped that the cost-of-living crisis could see an extension of the grant.
“The government continues to invest record amounts in the transition to EVs, with £2.5 billion injected since 2020, and has set the most ambitious phase-out dates for new diesel and petrol sales of any major country,” said Transport Minister Trudy Harrison. “But government funding must always be invested where it has the highest impact if that success story is to continue.”
The shift in focus aims to allow government funding to target expanding the public charging network, and so ensure the transition to zero-emission transport is easy and convenient for all drivers across the UK. In its Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Strategy, the government has already committed £1.6 billion to building the UK’s public charge point network.
Moreover, to continue the government’s drive towards net zero and ensure effective use of taxpayer funds, £300 million in grant funding will now be refocused towards extending plug-in grants to boost sales of plug-in taxis, motorcycles, vans and trucks and wheelchair accessible vehicles.
The government has emphasised that all existing applications for the grant will continue to be honoured and, where a car has been sold in the two working days before the announcement but an application for the grant from dealerships has not yet been made, the sale will also still qualify for the grant.
Since its inception in 2011, the government’s plug-in car grant has provided over £1.4 billion and supported the purchase of nearly half a million clean vehicles.