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As an incentive to motorists and to push the UK towards embracing electric and autonomous vehicles, The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Philip Hammond has announced a £400m fund to put towards electric car charging infrastructure.

Following news that the sale of all petrol and diesel cars would be banned in Britain by 2040, the government has announced it will be investing a staggering £400 million pounds into electric car charging infrastructure. This supports a government-backed strategy that has been set up to combat nitrogen dioxide (N02) pollution, with diesel motors being the worst producers of harmful pollution.

In addition to the £400m that will be used to support the electric car infrastructure, Philip Hammond has also announced that a further £100m is to be invested in the Plug-In Car Grant, a scheme that was sent up in 2011 that offers financial support to people who plan on purchasing an electric car.

Despite the sales of electric vehicles (EV) in the UK increasing by 45% since 2016, many motorists still have reservations about purchasing EVs because compared to prices of petrol and diesel cars, they are significantly more expensive - making the Plug-In Car scheme a great incentive for motorists.

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The £500m investment from the government will support plans for autonomous motors to be on public roads by 2021, coinciding with the aim for Britain to be the leaders of tech revolution. In addition to this, the funding is a great motivation for motorists to switch to an EV and will hopefully be the first step in introducing a more prominent number of EVs within the UK.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive is overall happy with the announcement regarding the Autumn Budget, he said:

"The Autumn Budget contains some positive measures and we are pleased to see a renewed commitment to new and future vehicle technology. The investment in charge points and new incentives to encourage the take up of electric cars is a positive step to boost buyer confidence, which will be essential to increasing market share".

Whilst EVs are more expensive to purchase than normal cars, they are actually cheaper to run and will save motorists money in the long run. When taking running costs in to consideration as well as road tax, servicing (an electric car like the ever popular Nissan Leaf can be serviced for as little as £99) and other costs, owning and running an electric vehicle is actually cheaper in comparison to a conventionally powered vehicle.

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A further £40m will be invested in charging research and development, meaning that more charging points will soon be available in many city centers and motorway service stations, offering more convenience for motorists to charge their vehicles.

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