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Why Go Electric?

If you're thinking about making a change on your driveway for the first time in about 10 years, you now have more options than you would've had last time you were car shopping.

All about the Road to Zero Plans (UK)

The UK government’s Road to Zero Plan is one of the most important talking points for motorists and workers in the automotive sector alike. Initially announced in July 2018, it is one of the most important documents for drivers to understand because it will impact their future on the road.


The Road to Zero Strategy in a nutshell

Road to Zero is a document that outlines the government’s plans to significantly cut emissions on UK roads by 2030. Interestingly, the plan originally set a date of 2035 but has been brought forward in line with developments within the industry. The plan forms a significant part of the government’s much wider Industrial Strategy, which is also heavily focused on edging as close to carbon-neutral as possible.

The 2030 plan additionally forms the next major stage of a longer-term strategy that will also set a target of emitting virtually zero carbon by 2050. Key takeaways from the 2030 Road t Zero strategy include;

  • The government will continue to improve the infrastructure needed to support electric vehicles, including widespread accessibility of charging stations.
  • At least 50% of new cars and 40% of new vans to be ultra-low emissions by 2030.
  • A ban on new diesel and petrol vehicles being made from 2030 (brought forward from 2040) although some exemptions will exist.

Those exemptions will include a five-year extension for vehicles that can satisfy the need to travel substantial distances while running in an all-electric mode. 

What it means for drivers

The scheme has many implications for the industry, including manufacturers, dealers, mechanics, and more. A greater focus on building fully electric vehicles has seen the tech used in EVs reach new heights. Popular models including the Peugeot e-208, Jaguar I-Pace, and Audi e-Tron have provided drivers with accessible options at various price points and to meet varying driver needs.

Drivers will increasingly feel the pressure to join the greener driving revolution over the course of the next decade. The good news is that making the switch will deliver a wide range of benefits, such as;

  • Help improve the environment by eradicating emissions, thus boosting air quality and more.
  • The vehicle’s running costs will be far lower.
  • EVs are blessed with a range of additional features and assertive driving tech.
  • There is the option to charge your EV at home, bringing greater convenience.
  • No road tax and the avoidance of congestion charges.
  • Handling benefits from the low weight and centre of gravity.
  • Acceleration will be smooth and responsive.

However, drivers should recognise that they will probably change vehicles more than once between now and 2030 (or 2035 for vehicles that meet low-emissions standards), which is why plug-in hybrid vehicles may be deemed a good way to complete the transition.

What other incentives are in place?

The government has set aside £400m for charging points to be installed over the next few years. Businesses can claim £350 per socket for up to 40 electric charging stations while individuals can take advantage of the same £350 grant for one socket at their home, which continues on from the former Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS).

Businesses also have the opportunity to get discounts using Benefit in Kind (BIK) rates while a tax reimbursement is available too. Individual buyers switching to electric vehicles can also take advantage of the £2,500 grant, which can be automatically applied by our experts on a wide range of EVs that cost under £35,000. 

The grant can be a maximum of 35% of the purchase price, which means almost all transactions will be eligible for the full grant. Eligible cars must additionally boast CO2 emissions of less than 50g/km and a zero-emission range of 70 miles or more. 

Free parking is another incentive offered in a wide range of locations across the UK. This can manifest itself as free dedicated parking bays or via the application of free parking permits. 

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The Recap

The Road to Zero is one of the most important schemes that the UK government has implemented in the bid to lower the nation’s carbon footprint, not least because it affects everyone. While the journey itself will extend to 2050 and beyond, UK drivers need to take note far sooner. Individuals and business owners should aim to implement changes by no later than 2030, although the plethora of benefits means it’s probably best to make the transition to greener driving ASAP.

For further information on the Road to Zero scheme, or advice on eligible vehicles, call our friendly experts today.