Grants for electric cars ‘will be slashed by £500 and WON’T apply to the best-selling Tesla vehicle any more’
- The government has subsidised 35% of the price of certain models up to £3,000
- This is now being cut to £2,500, with the upper limit of eligible cars also reduced
- As a result Tesla’s popular Model 3 won’t be covered due to its hefty price tag
Grants for electric cars are set to be slashed by £500 and won’t apply to the best-selling Tesla vehicle any more under new plans.
A government drive to encourage more green vehicles on the road has seen it subsidisie 35% of the purchase price of certain models up to a maximum of £3,000.
However, a surge in demand has placed huge strain on the scheme, meaning the highest grant available is being dropped to £2,500, while the upper limit of eligible cars is down from £50,000 to £35,000.
As a result, Tesla’s popular Model 3 – consistently Britain’s best-selling electric car in the last 12 months – won’t be covered by the grant any longer due to its £40,500 price tag.
Tesla’s popular Model 3 (pictured) – consistently Britain’s best-selling electric car in the last 12 months – won’t be covered by the grant any longer due to its £40,500 price tag
The Ford Mustang Mach-E, expected to hit the market soon, will also not be covered, though ministers insist overall electric car funding remains unchanged, with more than half of plug-in models still eligible for the grant even after the change.
But the decision was made with the view that taxpayers ‘should not be subsidising people to buy £50,000 cars’, Whitehall sources told the Times.
The pot will instead be spread more thinly over the next two years.
However, it is likely to spark fury not only among manufacturers but also environmental groups, which have urged the government to introduce more incentives so drivers switch from petrol and diesel cars to less polluting models.
Petrol and diesel cars and vans will no longer be sold in 2030, before hybrids also become banned five years later as part of the drive towards having greener cars on the road.
More than 100,000 plug-ins were sold last year, nearly three times as much as in the previous 12 months, but that still only represented around one in 15 new registrations.
Edmund King, the AA president, told the paper: ‘This is not great news for those waiting for delivery of the stylish entry-level Ford Mustang Mach-E as they will find that the price has ‘gone up’ by £3,000. Many buyers would have been counting on the subsidy.
‘On the other hand, most drivers knew that the ‘free ride’ wouldn’t last for ever and at least more early adopters should be able to benefit from spreading the grant further.’