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Government scraps the plug-in car grant

Whitehall has announced the end of the plug-in car grant that offers money off new electric cars

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The Department of Transport has pulled the plug (pun most definitely intended) on the Plug-in Car Grant today. The grant was the last remaining subsidy for electric cars, offering a discount of £1,500 off the cost of your new EV, as long as it was below the £32,000 mark.

The grant's been running since 2011 as part of a range of electric car subsidies put in place by the DoT to increase the uptake of EVs. It was already reduced down to £1,500 in December 2021 from the original £5000.

Both motoring bodies and the public seem pretty frustrated after hearing the unexpected news, especially considering the government's 2030 deadline. This move also leaves the UK as the only country in Europe without any upfront electric car purchase incentives. However, the bad news might come with some good news for electric car owners or potential buyers who want to have more charging easily available. The government is focusing on expanding the public electric car charging network instead, although there hasn't been any increase announced on the £1.6 billion already committed. The £300 million saved by axing the plug-in grants will be moved across to plug-in grants for electric taxis, vans, trucks, bicycles and wheelchairs.

The definite good news is that the government is so confident that the uptake of electric cars is going well they believe the money is no longer needed. It's true that previous reductions in grants have had almost no effect on the stratospherical demand in EVs, as electric cars and hybrids now make up almost half of all new cars sold in the UK. Fully-electric car sales shot up by 70% in 2021 alone.

Don't forget the huge savings you can make on used electric cars too, you don't have to buy new. Just take a look at our online showroom and you'll see what we mean. Plus it's better for the planet to buy used. Soon the £1,500 will be a distant thought when you see the money you're making back by buying a second-hand EV!

By Freda Lewis-Stempel