Budget: Call for support to used EV market

An imbalance between incentives for new and used EVs needs to be addressed by the government, according to the Vehicle Remarketing Association (VRA).

The trade body is calling on the government to use the next Budget to do more for the used sector, stating within two years, very large volumes of EVs would enter the used market from large vehicle fleets – and more needed to be done to ensure that a healthy market existed at that time.

VRA chair Philip Nothard said the government should be “applauded” for the uptake of new EVs through low personal company car taxation – but the used sector had “so far been left to look after itself” and that “demand is extremely variable even for the relatively low numbers of electric cars now making their way onto the used market.”

He said: “There’s a fundamental point here. New EVs are largely attractive to company car drivers because of low tax and to businesses because of their low environmental impact. These factors do not apply to private, used buyers.

“A lot of research exists that shows used buyers have a potential disposition towards buying an EV in the future, but evidence so far suggests that they will only do so if the car is the right price and makes sense on a practical level.

“What we believe is needed are incentives that mean when a consumer is faced with the choice of a used diesel or petrol car, or an electric alternative, the latter is sufficiently attractive that the used buyer sees it as viable purchase.”

The VRA also pointed to schemes run by other government’s – such as Scotland’s interest free used car loan, a €2,000 subsidy in the Netherlands, a €1,000 payment in France and a grant of up to €6,000 in Germany as potential ideas that could be considered.

Nothard said: “What is undeniable is that a healthy used car market is essential for the electrification of the UK car park and, as industry experts, we are far from sure that such a market will develop in the medium term without support. The government should understand that EVs are not just about new sales.”

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

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