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Government needs to ‘think again’ over scrappage scheme which may impact petrol owners

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A scrappage scheme idea has been suggested with the government saying it will look into offering £6,000 for motorists to get rid of their polluting petrol or diesel vehicle. The scheme is being considered to help struggling manufacturers who have seen new car sales fall by as much as 90 percent due to the coronavirus pandemic.  

However, Howard Cox, founder of Fair Fuel UK says this scheme would only benefit those who can afford a new electric vehicle where models can cost up to £20,000. 

He has questioned where ordinary motorists would find the extra £14,000 that may be needed to secure an electric vehicle sat the lower ends of the market.

Mr Cox has also called for “transparency” about what the future will hold for the petrol and diesel market which makes up the bulk of car sales in the UK. 

Speaking to Express.co.uk, the Fair Fuel founder added the move was going against a long term strategy for road use.

READ MORE: Car scrappage scheme may be ‘tipping point’ for market

Mr Cox has called for the latest scheme to target those most in need for support who will likely be unable to buy an electric vehicle. 

He suggests the previous scrappage scheme was “successful” due to its focus on driving sales in the petrol and diesel market.

Although interets in the electric car market has increased in recent years, petrol vehicles still make up the bulk of sales in the industry. 

SMMT data from the last normal sales month in February revealed petrol cars made up 60 percent of total demand. 

Diesel cars made up 22 percent of the market with fully electric cars accounting for just three percent of sales over the entire month. 

Mr Cox told Express.co.uk: “A previous scrappage scheme in 2009 to help stimulate the car market after the financial crisis was fruitful. 

“It gave drivers £2,000 towards the cost of a new car if they scrapped an older model. It helped to drive 400,000 [worth of] purchases in 10 months. Yes, it was successful, simply because it allowed purchases of cleaner petrol and diesel vehicles, not Electric! 

“The latest déjà vu dip into the world of scrappage inducements must be targeted at those most in need of support and has to be limited in scope. 

“With less than 10,000 rapid charging points across the UK for 37m drivers, where is the confidence to spend or borrow to buy a car that takes hours to fuel and is more stressful than diesel. 

“Any policy would need to provide value for taxpayer’s money, target support where it was most needed, be deliverable at local authority level and safe from fraud. 

“No Boris, what we really need is some transparency about what the future holds for diesel and petrol.”

The focus on electric cars is due to the government’s need to boost sales to meet tehri 2050 zero carbon strategy. 

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has previously said a ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars cyld be moved forward to meet the targets. 

This is currently pencilled in for 2040 but Mr Shapps has previously said this could be rushed forward by 2032. 



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