back to article BoJo looks to jumpstart UK economy with £6k taxpayer-funded incentive for Brits to buy electric cars – report

Mop-haired Brit Prime Minister Boris Johnson is considering ways to jumpstart the UK economy, including a scheme to hand £6,000 of taxpayers' cash to every driver who permanently parks their petrol or diesel guzzler and buys an electric car. According to The Telegraph, Johnson intends to unveil the initiative on 6 July to help …

  1. Unep Eurobats
    Facepalm

    Buy more cars - drive them less

    So the PM wants us to buy more cars but his transport secretary wants us to drive them less.

    OK, maybe this isn't completely contradictory. Climate control, surround sound, wi-fi, ergonomic seat - just leave them permanently on the drive, plugged in, as the perfect home office.

    1. iron Silver badge

      Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

      That's why the rebate is on electric cars. With their typical range and charging time you WILL be driving less!

      1. Robert Grant Silver badge

        Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

        To be equivalent, everyone would need a petrol station on their drives that fulls their car up overnight.

        1. Smooth Newt Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

          To be equivalent, everyone would need a petrol station on their drives that fulls their car up overnight.

          To make your petrol-station equivalent drive, you need a drive.

          People who live in flats, shared accommodation, even houses that aren't set back from the street by at least a car length etc are going to have a bit of a problem. A great many people don't even have adjacent on-street parking. Maybe they could use a very long electrical extension lead?

          1. Captain Scarlet Silver badge

            Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

            I would need a 50m extenstion lead, which would also cause a massive tripping hazard.

            Those of us in flats would probably need a removable cell which is light enough, that we can take in and recharge overnight (Even if its on some form of trolley).

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              People in flats aren't an issue as most flats have a dedicated car park so putting chargers in the car park (either shared or single use) is an easy task.

              Government stats show about 75% of people have off street parking. That leaves people with on street parking where they can't park outside their house. These would need to be served by on-street chargers or workplace charging.

              If you can park outside your house nearly all the time then you can usually get a pavement channel for a cable to charge the car.

              If you have no regular car parking place on the street, you drive a lot, you don't have a rapid charger nearby, you don't have a regular workplace or one that can't install a charger and your local council is not interested in providing a public charging infrastructure - well you're not going to be able to drive an electric car for the foreseeable future.

              However the landscape is likely to have changed significantly over the next 10-15 years.

              1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                "Government stats show about 75% of people have off street parking."

                You, or someone with a similar writing style, keep posting this, and I keep replying that I don't know how that figure is reached. In many towns/cities, there are entire areas which consist solely of terraced housing spreading over acres. The people who live there are usually at the lower end of the socio-economic scale, though not always (think big Victorian/Edwardian terraces). There is no off-street parking, nor will there ever be short of bulldozing and starting again. Your blithe "75 percent", even if true, denies reality.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                  It's not me, but you can just look up the statistics yourself to get the figures.

                  "Your blithe "75 percent", even if true, denies reality."

                  I presume that sentence was a joke?

                  Remember a statics trumps anecdotal or empirical evidence based on perception.

                  Might it be quite surprising to know that although there are terraced houses with no access to off street parking there might be quite a lot of houses that don't fall into this category. (roughly three times as many!)

                  1. Intractable Potsherd Silver badge

                    Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                    The pint I'm making is that the national figure is not granular enough. Have you been to any ex-industrial towns with their swathes of terraces? Have you been to many seaside towns, where parking at all is a luxury? Fine, suburbia might outnumber these areas, but those stats do not reflect the lived reality of millions of people. Of the dozen or so places I've lived in my life, a full half of those had no off-street parking, or any way of putting it in. Two were unusual in that they were the only houses on the road that had off-road parking near the house. One had parking perched precariously above the front garden (you'd have to see it to believe it). My hit-rate for on-road parking would be higher, except I made parking on my land an absolute requirement as soon as I could afford not to consider anything else.

                    1. Anonymous Coward
                      Anonymous Coward

                      Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                      The national figures are based on actual housing stock. Your evaluation of 12 places does not trump actual statistics.

                      I've lived in areas where every house had off street parking, others where they was no possibility of off-street parking as they didn't have a front garden that could accommodate a car and other places where the owner could take the decision to knock down their front wall and create a parking space with a drop kerb.

                      But that is meaningless, despite having lived in extremely varied places in the UK I wouldn't suppose that my experiences can give me a reliable figure for housing stock in the UK, for that I would have to turn to official stats whose job it is to crunch the numbers in an unbiased way.

                      Add to the fact that many new hosing developments have a requirement to include parking provisions within their planning documents that often ensure adequate parking for residents.

              2. Captain Scarlet Silver badge

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                Except if 1 person from the block of flats refuses thats it, if the freeholder refuses thats it, if utilities refuse thats it.

                Its bad enough trying to get anything fixed in communal areas.

            2. Jan 0

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              > a removable cell which is light enough, that we can take in and recharge overnight.

              Or why not exchange it for a full cell at your nearest filling station?

              Our government could mandate that all cars would use cells from a small range of shapes and sizes which were common to all car makes.

              1. Strahd Ivarius Bronze badge

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                knowing the government, you can expect to end up with a Klein bottle...

                1. Toni the terrible

                  Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                  Get them to make the cell sizes compliant to a British Standard. I would love to see such a thing for a Klein Bottle.

            3. MachDiamond Silver badge

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              "Those of us in flats would probably need a removable cell which is light enough, that we can take in and recharge overnight (Even if its on some form of trolley)."

              That would go from being called a "cell" to "bomb". The energy density would be impossibly high and not something you'd want to cuddle up to at night.

      2. John Robson Silver badge

        Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

        The number of vehicles on the roads today that exceed even 100 miles a day is pretty low. With reasonably affordable EVs having ranges of 200-300 miles I can only think of one journey I make which would need a pitstop; and that journey needs one anyway....

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

          Can we clarify this? Do you mean the number of vehicles that didn't exceed 100 miles on some particular day, say 1st March 2020 (before lockdown) or the number of vehicles that never exceed 100 miles a day in the course of a year?

          It's a big difference. I don't have a daily commute Pre lockdown I might not take my car on the road on some days and most occasions when I did I wouldn't exceed, say 20 miles and living where I do a substantial part of each journey involves driving uphill and then wasting the potential energy thus gained in braking going downhill. Being able to reclaim that energy would be a good fit for an electric car.

          About half my annual mileage takes place on holiday when I might drive a few hundred miles a day going to and from my destination, I wouldn't count on being able to access an overnight charger at my destination and I wouldn't want to have my days dominated on holiday partially controlled by having to hunt up somewhere to top up the battery and hanging about when I do.

          There would be no point whatsoever in having a vehicle which can't fit both scenarios.

          1. Robert Grant Silver badge

            Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

            Imagine renting a car for those few days a year.

            1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              "Imagine renting a car for those few days a year."

              What car would that be when they're all electric?

              1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                I should have added that because my annual mileage is fairly low it would also mean hiring a car for a not inconsiderable portion of my annual mileage. It doesn't make sense.

                And would those two down-voters try answering my original question?

                1. John Robson Silver badge

                  Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                  You might find that it's cheaper to hire a car than to own one then...

              2. MachDiamond Silver badge

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                You'd then hire a car with very long range rather than the more modestly priced and range car you use on a daily basis. I'm not a fan of Tesla, but some of the long range versions will go a very long distance. You get to the point where bladder anxiety is a bigger issue. Many EV's satnavs will highlight charging stations.

                If you drive 30 miles per day and have an EV with 240 miles of range, that a week between charges so not having off-street parking might still be ok. If you can charge at work or there is charging where you do your shopping, charging becomes a non-issue. You could also prod your local council to get chargers (mostly level 2) at local parks and other places that are pleasant to visit for a few hours on a weekend.

                I am seeing more and more chargers being put in at shopping centers and expect that it won't be long before ones that don't have them will lose plenty of customers to ones that do. People that can't charge at home yet still want the cost savings of driving and EV will be looking for places to charge when they can be doing something like running errands or having a walk.

            2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              "Imagine renting a car for those few days a year."

              ...at peak holiday time when all those others in the same position of only ever doing low mileage all find the need a bigger longer range car at the same time. Especially if, in the light of our current experience, more people decide that staying in the home country is a viable holiday option.

              Disclaimer: I fit that category too. We've not left the UK in the last 10 years for our holidays. It's surprising how large and diverse the UK is once you actually stop and take a look.

          2. Caver_Dave
            Boffin

            Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

            Doctor Syntax

            My car has regenerative braking and so charges the battery when I am going downhill.

            It also has a petrol engine for when I do longer journeys.

            Most days the commute is about 10% of the battery range.

            That would seem to fulfil your criteria.

            Mine is an old Mitsubishi Outlander and new, better car are available now.

            1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              I looked into that last year. My wife was warned off driving because of eye-sight problems. I looked at the market with a view to replacing both cars by one.

              First requirement would be 4wd on the basis that the council doesn't quickly if ever get round to clearing snow on these hill roads. At present SWMBO's little Suzuki fills that role. That requirement restricted the market.

              For the reasons given I looked at hybrids. Most seemed to rely on the petrol engine to charge the battery. ?? That seemed more like gesture politics than a sensible change.

              So I then looked at plug-in hybrids. Right at the top of the price range.

              Fortunately surgery resolved the sight problems and I dropped the idea.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                Fa easier to make a 4wd Electric Car than an ICE car. Hence why most Teslas are 4wd.

                1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                  Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                  Fa easier to make a 4wd Electric Car than an ICE car. Hence why most Teslas are 4wd.

                  Not necessarily, ie they're dual motor, one for the front, one for the rear. Those motors are big/heavy, and each has a gearbox vs an ICE with a single motor (ok, engine), gearbox and AWD handled by the drive train. From watching various EV teardowns on YT (RichRebuilds especially), EV's seem as complex as ICEs.

                  Then again, I guess dual motors have the potential for more complex ECUs & more control over signalling to front/rear motor than a (mostly) mechanical drive train. So doing stuff like splitting power between front/rear wheels would seem simpler in a dual EV. Not sure how that would translate into handling or driver benefits though, and maybe there'll be an EV rally series some day. Even though EVs generally have a lot of torque, that'd be offset by the increased weight compared to an ICE rally car.

                  1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                    Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                    " Those motors are big/heavy, and each has a gearbox vs an ICE with a single motor (ok, engine), gearbox and AWD handled by the drive train."

                    There's still a tendency to build a "traditional" ICE car but with one or more electric motors in place of ther engine. I was under the impression that manufacturers are finally getting their head around the paradigm shift to electric and are building, or at least looking at, putting the electric motors in the wheels, one per wheel.

                    1. Anonymous Coward
                      Anonymous Coward

                      Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                      "manufacturers are finally getting their head around the paradigm shift to electric and are building, or at least looking at, putting the electric motors in the wheels, one per wheel."

                      That's a terrible idea. It massively increases the vehicle's unsprung weight (ruining ride quality) and moves cost, complexity and the like to the most commonly damaged and highly stressed bits of the vehicle. It also limits gearing options to whatever will fit inside a front wheel- any protrusion means there's a huge swept volume to be kept clear as the wheel turns, quickly voiding space savings.

                      There are also problems with heat dissipation if you're not able to rely 100% on regenerative braking (which allows the heat to be moved somewhat)- you've got a hot brake disc surrounded by hot motor.

                      There's a reason the 2020 Taycan doesn't use this, 122 years after Porsche first used in-wheel motors.

                      1. John Robson Silver badge

                        Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                        Don't need to massively increase the sprung weight - a car wheel is already a heavy bit of kit, and the chassis will be more massive as well.

                        a 20" car tyre can be 15 kg, the wheel itself probably the same again, then the brake discs and calipers...

                        The tesla motor is 30Kg, but also produces 350+ bhp.

                        With four motors even 35hp would be reasonable for a 'normal' car, it would give 120bhp.

                        You would likely want more powerful motors in the front wheels, since the would also be responsible for braking...

                        So yes, you increase the spring mass, maybe by a factor of 2.... But I'd suggest that a Jag has better handling than a fiesta, despite the wheels weighing much more than twice as much.

                        You'd obviously tune the suspension differently.

                        The other alternative is to have the motors mounted just inboard of each wheel, possibly within the suspension (so they are partially sprung)

                        1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                          Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                          The other alternative is to have the motors mounted just inboard of each wheel, possibly within the suspension (so they are partially sprung)

                          Unless motors get a lot smaller, I don't think that's practical. Increasing the unsprung mass means more vibration, wheel hop etc. So generally a bad thing when the idea is to use the suspension to keep the wheels on the road & the occupants happy.

                          Then there's the packing problem, ie wheel space & wheel welll space. So some's already taken with brakes, and the well has to accomodate suspension components that have to be able to move vertically & horizontally so the car can steer.. Which is AFAIK the reason per or in-wheel motors are only really used on heavy machinery where there's more space to work with.

                          Source: Me finding this- https://www.stevemorrisengines.com/engines/bbc/2-500-3-500hp-efi-only and thinking 'that could be fun!'. Then thinking if it would be possible to stick that in a mid-engine AWD/AWS road legal(ish) car.. Which has kept me amused researching the practicalities and challenges involved in cramming that beast + everything else necessary into a practical sized car. Luckily I share Mark Twain's opinion of golf.

                          1. John Robson Silver badge

                            Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                            Motors don't need to get much smaller, and you don't need to put them *in* the rim if their casing *is* the rim. Given how expensive it is to kerb an alloy already I don't see a huge issue in rehousing motors.

                            The brakes can be much smaller, since the majority of the braking is done by the motors - you still need some mechanical braking, but not nearly as much as you'd think.

                            IIRC one of the early Mitsibushi ev's had in wheel motors, might be wrong though.

                            The wheel mass -> wheel hop only applies if you don't adjust the suspension. A jaguar has a MUCH heavier wheel than a fiesta, and I know which is more comfortable.

                      2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                        Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                        "That's a terrible idea."

                        It quite possibly is, but you're still thinking in terms of a "traditional" car with "traditional" engineering. What if, for example, the wheel rim IS the motor, not just a wheel rim with a motor and all the other gubbins shoved in? I've no idea if this is possible or practicable.

                        Also worth noting, you n ow don't have a big gear box, drive train or diff to worry about. You have lots more space for larger wheel wells because you have more space inside the car body. You can now design around a completely different chassis concept. I dunno, it could be fun to play around with.

                  2. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                    No much easier in an EV. There is no linkage, gears, synchorinisation, diagonal diff locking etc.

                    In a simple form it is a battery through a power controller directly linked to two independent motors.

                    These can independently adjust power and speed to each set of axles. One motor fails you can still run on the other. In an ICE, the drive to the rear fails and the car stops, unless you are really lucky).

                    All you need for a 4wd EV is a bit of extra space (not much more than a rear diff) and a controller board.

                2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

                  Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                  Agreed, but I suspect that even the 2WD plugin-hybrids would be top of the 2WD range.

                  The issue is that to get occasional range you need a hybrid. To make EV worth-while you need plug-in. Combining the two is more expensive as it needs both an ICE and the extra circuitry for external charging. But then the cost is bumped up more by sticking in all the additional bells and whistles of the top of range models.

                3. DiViDeD Silver badge

                  Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                  There's a huge difference between an AWD road car and a 4WD for getting across fields and up logging tracks.

                  Just sayin

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                    If you're talking about the car itself (body etc) then of course. If you're talking about the mechanical capabilities of an EV in a off road body system , then also right the EV would be much better.

              2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                "For the reasons given I looked at hybrids. Most seemed to rely on the petrol engine to charge the battery. ?? That seemed more like gesture politics than a sensible change."

                And not forgetting that hybrids, especially the non-plug-in variety are likely to go the way of ICE cars too, possibly at the same time in terms of a sales ban on new vehicles.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

            "I wouldn't count on being able to access an overnight charger at my destination"

            Well yeah you probably would as many places now have electric car charging and more are adding it all the tie. Therefore you click the filter on your favourite booking platform and select one that has electric car charging points available.

            Even still, I've driven holidays all over Europe and so have many, many more with no issue at all with charging. In fact more of my holidays are now driving ones as it's much nicer in an electric car than the old diesel. This summer was due to be to every country of the UK (might still be yet). This will all be by car (and ferry) and charging points were an afterthought rather than a primary motivator for the choice of lodgings or routes.

            Believe it or not, some of the stops for charging are actually too short as I haven't had time to drink my coffee and have a snack before it's time to disconnect from the charger to avoid excess fees.

            1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              Where I've seen hotels with charging points there might only be one or two so the first problem is getting there before someone else arrives to get an overnight charge. The next is getting there before anyone else rolls up in an ICE car and finds the only place to park is in front of the the charger (yes, that has been me).

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

                Never been a problem for me. If an ICE blocks the charger the receptionist have always been helpful enough to ask them to move out of that space as it is for electric vehicles. Many hotels now put a sign showing parking is for EVs only.

                As for capacity - well there is a helpful app for that. It allows you to contact an anonymous link asking the other EV driver if they could let you know when they have fully charged so yo can charge, if they are signed u to the app. Often they can remotely unlock the charger so you can use it or come down and move across a space. Surprisingly other EV drivers currently help each other out sometimes.

                However if demand gets too high - you know what the hotel is likely to do? Yep install another charger, and then another etc

                If it becomes too difficult you can put a 3 plug through their window - great thing about EVs - pretty much every property has the ability to refuel it as lng as you can get close enough.

            2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

              Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

              you click the filter on your favourite booking platform and select one that has electric car charging points available."

              Oddly, I was staying at a very large, well appointed hotel in Nottingham a few months ago. They 8 charging points, which was quite impressive. I have no idea if there were time limits on their usage, ie, you go move your car once it's charged, but when I got back each day at about 6pm, they were all occupied apart from the one that was also a disabled parking bay.

              I'd like to think that the hotel had some sort of system in place that guests would be in a virtual queue for charging time and got a text message when a slot became available. If my car had been electric instead of diesel, I'd have been ok as not only could I charge at the office, but a full charge would have done me all week anyway. But this was a BIG hotel and conference centre. 8 charge points clearly wasn't enough even with the current relatively low take up of plug-ins. Especially since many of the guest were conference delegate on a day or two trip and would want a full charge before heading back.

          4. John Robson Silver badge

            Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

            Half your annual milage is expended on two days.

            That's fine. You have a journey of 500 miles... you simply take a lunch break and a tea break, because you need periodic rests anyway.

            Overnight charging is actually really simple, a kettle lead is sufficient.

            2kW for ten hours is 20kWH which is enough for 80 miles. (265wH/mile for the leaf - rounded up a bit because the 2kW is obviously low)

            So you won't be fully charged at the end of a night, but on holiday you'll likely have more than ten hours parked up, and likely not be driving 80 miles a day.

            By the end of the week you'll have easily filled the battery up without any special charging hardware and can drive home, taking a pitstop at a fast charger.

        2. DiViDeD Silver badge

          Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

          The number of vehicles on the roads today that exceed even 100 miles a day is pretty low.

          Maybe in your corner of the world.

          I live on the Central Coast of NSW and most of my neighbours work in Sydney or Newcastle. That means a round trip of >100km for Newcastle and >200km for Parramatta (my current commute)

          Out in Country NSW, people very often will have a 50-100km journey to the nearest shop or to visit a neighbour.

          1. John Robson Silver badge

            Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

            First though... You live pretty far away from work...

            But then 100km is only 60 miles - which is easily within even last generation vehicles capacity.

            200kms is 120 miles, I used to commute 140/day a little over a decade ago and would have bought an electric car if I could have got the range up to about 120 - I would have had 8 hours of charging at the office as well as 12 at home - easily enough for the journey, but back then that wasn't quite available - I looked quite hard though. 20 hours of even trickle charging is nearly 200 miles.

            If you look at ranges in miles and distances in km then don't forget to convert.

            50-100km is only 15-30 miles... That's so easily within range as to be absolutely fine... You might want to visit the shop and the neighbour in the same direction on the same day, but that's hardly rocket science, I'd expect you to be doing that anyway.

      3. Stuart 22

        Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

        We bought one last August. Our mileage doubled overnight because it was just such a more pleasant experience than the old oil guzzler. That include a trip to Scotlnd & back (from London).

        Mind you it's dropped to near zero since March 16th. My little app shows I've run on just one recharge since then. Range hasn't been a problem but then I didn't need to check my eyesight. YMMV.

        1. BebopWeBop Silver badge

          Re: Buy more cars - drive them less

          Snap - although the other way round on the long trip. We do have an elserly petrol vehicle - a little two seater, it has sone about 4 months to the gallon. Although when its time comes for the next service I iwll not be prepared to spend much money, so its scrappage (as a vanity vehicle) might come sooner than later.

    2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      FAIL

      Totally f**king useless without the power supply network to back it up.

      "Renewables" (but not nuclear) you say?

      Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha,

      Now if Johnson wants to improve the environment get everything off the roads that can't meet say 2010 emission standards.

      That actually would be good for the environment and the UK car industry.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Totally f**king useless without the power supply network to back it up.

        It's amazing that National Grid themselves have said grid capacity won't be a problem with the move to electric vehicle (but what do they know eh?).

        It's also amazing that some people are currently being paid money at certain times of the week to use electricity as the grid has over supply. Even before everyone was sat at home there were times when they were being paid to use electricity.

        Another fact - it would be cleaner to put all the fuel into generators to power electric cars than it would be to keep it in ICE vehicles.

        1. EBG

          Re: Totally f**king useless without the power supply network to back it up.

          We live in a world where the public stance of the grid cannot be allowed to be anything else. Talk to actual grid engineers and you get a different picture.

  2. The commentard formerly known as Mister_C

    Really good "helping hand" Bozo

    It sounds like sales of leccy cars are doing quite well enough. So you propose to add an extra incentive to a market that needs no help? But you've leaked that it'll happen in a month or so. Anybody with half a brain that can wait, will. Why buy now when I can get a rebate if I wait?

    The only way this would help is to reduce the queue.

    1. j.bourne
      Thumb Down

      Re: Really good "helping hand" Bozo

      I have absolutely no idea how subsidising £6k on ev car purchases helps uk business. Last I looked the UK doesn't manufacture many ev cars. Except maybe the Nissan Leaf. Although Nissan isn't a UK company...

      I don't remember paying my taxes to subsidise foreign business.

      1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

        Re: Really good "helping hand" Bozo

        I'd check Borish and Dumanique's investment portfolios, that will probably tell you where the money is going ... let's get Brexit plugged in ... to your neighbours electrical socket.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Really good "helping hand" Bozo

        That's because the press don't point it out.

    2. Fred Dibnah Silver badge

      Re: Really good "helping hand" Bozo

      The manufacturers can use the month's grace to increase their prices by £6k or so.

  3. Arbuthnot the Magnificent

    Useful

    That'll really help people commute to the jobs they lost.

  4. Peter2 Silver badge

    I thought that the problem was that the UK economy is now largely service based, and that nobody is currently using the services because we aren't allowed out of our houses.

    Buying cars from foreign companies appears unlikely to jump start the UK economy because they are all foreign owned, and so the profits leave the UK with the only benefits being the wages paid to the people nailing the bits together which recirculate, but mostly only to go on rent/mortgages and food. (and any sub components that are made by british firms with british owners)

    1. LucreLout Silver badge

      Buying cars from foreign companies appears unlikely to jump start the UK economy because they are all foreign owned

      I expect the idea is that people who've just bought a new car will want to drive it, thereby encouraging them to go places, which means they'll spend money. I'm not suggesting its the best use of a £6k tax cut mind, only that it's not just about the car, it's about the services the new owner uses.

      Companies are no longer owned where they're headquartered, at least not exclusively. In terms of car companies, I own bits of several, but none are headquartered in the UK nor I where they are based.

      1. Smooth Newt Silver badge
        Boffin

        Hassle and cost

        I expect the idea is that people who've just bought a new car will want to drive it, thereby encouraging them to go places, which means they'll spend money. I'm not suggesting its the best use of a £6k tax cut mind, only that it's not just about the car, it's about the services the new owner uses.

        The UK Government plug-in car grant scheme has been in place since 2011, when it was £5,000 (at that time it covered all ultra-low emission cars). It has been reduced over the years and is currently £3,000 and for electric cars only. See this on the Government website. I assume you won't get both grants simultaneously.

        Electric cars aren't particularly popular because low and mid range model purchase price is about a third more than petrol, for far worse performance. They have a much smaller range, take problematic amounts of time to refuel during a journey and are considerably heavier. This estimate shows them as saving only about 10% total cost of ownership per mile.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Hassle and cost

          "Electric cars aren't particularly popular because low and mid range model purchase price is about a third more than petrol, for far worse performance. They have a much smaller range, take problematic amounts of time to refuel during a journey and are considerably heavier. This estimate shows them as saving only about 10% total cost of ownership per mile."

          That is a really selective set of figures you have chosen. You can get an electric car that is way cheaper than the petrol equivalent depending on what stats your are looking at. I mean a Tesla Model 3 can go 0-6 in 3.2seconds. Try to find an ICE which can do that with the same tech and still carry 3 children and the same luggage space - you'll be paying a lot.

          So the only way to do like for liek is by checking cars that have an exact petrol equivalent, but these are all skewed as they make the ICE version then use that design to stuff in electric motors and batteries and sell in far lower volumes. The range and 'problematic' refueling is something to debate at a different time. So the cost of ownership - there are plenty of studies showing how much cheaper they are to own. Sure you can link to one article that compares a couple of models based on single data points.

          But circumstances vary. Charge at an Ionity charger with no membership and you could pay more than the price of fuel to 'fill it up'. Charge at home (as is the norm for most people) in a Tesla Model 3 and the costs are about 1/8th of an equivalent performance vehicle. The servicing is ridiculous as, of course, BMW require a service plan for an electric car. However Tesla don't as there is not standard servicing required. Brakes, Tyres and washer fluid are about it. Talking of brakes - they don't need replacing due to wear for most people (pads or discs) for 100,000 mile or more.

          The article shows the tyres as being 4 times the price for an electric car - jeez, they're just tyres the same as a normal car. So it is insurance that pushes the price up - and that depends on the driver however the insurance quotes for electric are all over the place. You can get great deals, others are way higher than ICE equivalents - all about risk which the insurers haven't worked out yet.

          1. Smooth Newt Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: Hassle and cost

            That is a really selective set of figures you have chosen. You can get an electric car that is way cheaper than the petrol equivalent depending on what stats your are looking at. I mean a Tesla Model 3 can go 0-6 in 3.2seconds. Try to find an ICE which can do that with the same tech and still carry 3 children and the same luggage space - you'll be paying a lot.

            Electric motors have high torque at low speed, and petrol engines have high torque at about 4000 rpm, so an electric vehicle will have high acceleration. Back in the world most people inhabit, however, the low cost of the fuel for electric cars does not really offset their high purchase cost unless you are expecting to drive a great many more miles than is typical.

            The problematic refuelling that you think is something to debate at a different time is a real issue, and is actually the show stopper that has prevented me from buying one. I quite like the idea of having one and I'm not particularly fussed about the cost. It's the simplicity and the potential for not using fossil fuel that appeals to me, rather than the 0->hospital in 3.2 seconds. But if I can only drive the bloody thing 70 miles out and 70 miles back without having to try to find somewhere on the way where I can plug it in and hang around for an hour waiting for it to charge then it is a non-starter.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Hassle and cost

              It's a different mindset that when you understand it makes perfect sense. Everyone who drives an ICE vehicle looks at recharging the vehicle like a petrol station. I sure did when I didn't have an EV.

              Then I read about how it actually works. You charge it overnight (just leave it plugged in). It takes seconds rather than minutes at a petrol station. Every day you have a full tank of fuel for a fraction of the cost waiting for you each morning. I used to hate seeing my fuel light come on and having to find a petrol station, stand in the cold for 5 minutes filling with fuel - never liked it.

              For 99% of normal driving that may sufficient for normal commuting, day trips etc.

              If you wish to do a longer trip then you either stop to fill up after quite a few hours of driving for 20-30 minutes while you take a break or you could hire a car for the odd occasion for a long trip (either an ICE or a longer range electric). You could use a charger at the destination where you are going and charge it there. Whenever you are charging the car you'll be warm, dry and comfortable at least.

              In reality, unless you have a town car EV (40 -50 mile range) and you have a modern purpose built EV that does 2-300 mile range then it shouldn't be an issue.

              This is just talking from experience, commuting 60 miles each day, doing road trips across Europe, doing trips around the UK. I can honestly say I have never thought - this would be easier in my Diesel (that has been sat on my drive for 9 months un-driven). I have never sat at a charger thinking "if only I could just fill up with Diesel now and be off". In fact I enjoy driving past the fuel stations I used to have to top up at every week, knowing it's not required any more.

              Put it another way. Would you prefer a mobile phone with a battery that lasts a day and you top up every night at home or work (or occasionally by using the plug socket in a campsite) or a phone that lasts 3 days but you have to go and find a phone shop to recharge it every time you need to top it up (for a 4 x premium price)?

              1. DiViDeD Silver badge

                Re: Hassle and cost

                I'm not sure about the 'makes perfect sense' part of your argument. You have a car with, say, 185km range on a full charge. You want to listen to some music, but that knockes, generously, 180km off your range. You're driving across Nortwest NSW in temperatures of 48C, or central Canada in midwinter, or WA at night.

                So you need a heating or cooling system, which will run directly off the battery, since your vehicle isn't generating any additional electricity from the motor. It's dark, you have your headlights on. In Australia, you have your rear foglights on to minimise the possibility of a 24 wheel B Double ramming you up the backside. What is the range of your car now, bearing in mind that in rural areas you can travel for hours without seeing a building, let alone a hotel with plentiful charging points?

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Hassle and cost

                  For sure, it's always possible to plan a journey that takes a route that just about exceeds the range of your car, but why would you do that?

                  If you do longer journeys regularly then you get a car with a longer range. If you do a journey regularly that goes into the middle of the Australian bush for 9 hours on dirt roads then an electric car isn't going to work. In fact in Australia if you are not on the West-South West coast (Brisbane to Adelaide) or staying around Perth then An Electric car would be difficult for travel at the moment.

                  However you can get electric cars with a 500km battery range that will give 350km even in the worst of the regular driving conditions (lights. music don't take any significant power, heating, slamming your foot down or high speed driving, freezing cold batteries does). When you get in the car most will estimate battery range for your entire journey to allow you to see if you can do the trip or where it would be best to to top up your charge en route.

                  You would need rapid chargers for charging during a journey, hotel chargers are for stopping off for a few hours/overnight.

    2. Steve Foster

      There are several factors to consider:

      a) the profits on the car sales (which definitely goes overseas),

      b) the service-based UK car jobs (dealerships/showrooms, garages, logistics, etc),

      c) the car financing profits (may/may not go overseas, depending on source),

      d) avoiding reintroducing the pollution from cars (the air quality has improved massively during lockdown)

      I'm not sure where the overall balance would sit, and how (or whether) you can actually value (d).

      1. Peter2 Silver badge

        b) If everybody started buying new electric cars, this would harm the market for second hand cars in their dealerships and showrooms, so gains at the EV showrooms would be offset by losses everywhere else. Garages and logistics would remain unchanged, assuming that electric cars will still need mechanical servicing.

        c) My bet is that the majority of companies set up to do complex hire purchase stuff or other financing will have an army of accountants who will be quietly vanishing all of the profits.

        d) Simple. The cost of near zero emissions from cars for 3 months is shown in the government projected borrowing; about three hundred billion pounds this year.

        Tax receipts are ~700 billion a year, so we'd need to basically increase our tax take by ~50%, or reduce our expenditures by around half. The NHS budget is £120 billion a year for general reference, education is about the same, and defense is about £50 billion. Cutting all of those three major expenses to zero would be nearly enough, but we'd have to go a bit further with cuts.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          "d) Simple. The cost of near zero emissions from cars for 3 months is shown in the government projected borrowing; about three hundred billion pounds this year."

          If that was the only factor, they could just buy an EV replacement for every car owner, make the same pollution saving and for, probably, a lot less cost. Although year one might well cost the amount you stated while 1000's more charging points are installed.

      2. Missing Semicolon

        Service based jobs?

        The Mitsubishi dealer only charges me £250-£300 for the service. They tell me they don't see them much otherwise.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Service based jobs?

          Electric cars don't need traditional servicing. Even the brakes on some electric cars could last the lifetime of the vehicle.

          So other than tyres, cabin air filters, washer fluid the servicing costs are just to keep the dealers happy and do a visual inspection. Far cheaper to do wash fluid and air filters yourself, local tyre place to do the tyres and grease the brakes and MOT for your visual inspection.

          Some brands have said that electric cars don't need scheduled servicing.

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: Service based jobs?

            ""Far cheaper to do wash fluid and air filters yourself, "

            Wash fluid? You don't seriously mean that some people only ever get the screen washers topped up at the service intervals, do you? You mentioned it twice so maybe not a type, maybe a brain fart and you meant radiator fluid? (Which an EV doesn't have)

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Service based jobs?

              Why would I mean Radiator fluid, which as you state EVs don't have.

              the point is that there are very few things that need servicing on an EV so when you get the car serviced by a major dealer the things they will point out that they do as part of the service is "check and top up" the washer fluid. That's how trivial their servicing is. While we're on the subject, windscreen wipers also.

    3. Spicer

      Funny that, a few days ago we heard that Tesla was contemplating opening a factory in Bristol (or thereabouts!) ...

      Could that be part of the deal? Hmmm, let me think ....

      1. Peter X

        But surely that won't go ahead if we hard-brexit?

        1. Wellyboot Silver badge

          From next Jan - Imported cars = 10% tariff unless a trade deal appears.

          But, import car components and assemble locally = 0% tariff, lot of nice gov't 'assistance' with setting up the plant and can be advertised as built in UK.

      2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Contemplation is cheap.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Nah, that's a 69 point word.

  5. wolfetone

    "Mop-haired Brit Prime Minister Boris Johnson"

    This comparison is offensive to mops. At least they're useful.

    1. Roger Kynaston Bronze badge

      and he is becoming bald

      His hair is decidedly thinner now. He will be even less use

    2. BebopWeBop Silver badge

      He might make a good draught excluder?

  6. andy 103 Silver badge
    Stop

    Free parking for electric cars

    I work at an educational institution where staff have to buy parking permits which are several hundred pounds per year.

    They offer heavily discounted - to the point of virtually being free of charge - permits for anyone driving in electric car. This is supposed to incentivise people to want to ditch their non-electric vehicle.

    Some quick maths:

    * Cost of a new electric car

    * Minus money obtained from selling my petrol car

    * Factor in relative difference in running costs, including this permit price difference...

    ...does not equal a "saving" of any description. Or anything else beneficial to me.

    Public transport? Not viable for my journey, or any other journeys I make routinely.

    So, I simply carry on driving my petrol car. Nobody (including Bojo and this scheme) has ever provided any incentive that makes doing this worthwhile for the average person.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Free parking for electric cars

      > the average person

      That's rather the point.

      No need to help the plebs, what have they ever done for us cabinet members ?

    2. Steve Foster

      Re: Free parking for electric cars

      Removing the cost of using the existing infrastructure from electric vehicles is ultimately self-defeating (the country cannot afford to give up those forms of income in the long-term).

      Plus, such discounts are generally regressive, as the current price differential between petrol/diesel cars and the EV equivalent is such that EV purchases are mostly made by the wealthiest (ie those who can most afford to pay for the infrastructure are the ones least in need of such discounts).

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Free parking for electric cars

        >Plus, such discounts are generally regressive,

        Remind me which party is in power ?

        1. Version 1.0 Silver badge

          Re: Free parking for electric cars

          Remind me which party is in power ?

          The party that paid Beeching to kill the railways, promised a new railway line to the North of England to get them votes in the election, reckons that building a bridge across the Irish Channel is easy (even if you have to drive to Scotland to get on the bridge) , and thinks that "smart" roads cause less accidents, not more.

          1. Zog_but_not_the_first
            Headmaster

            Re: Free parking for electric cars

            "The party that paid Beeching to kill the railways..."

            Pedant point - Beeching was a civil servant charged with formulating the plan under instructions from his boss, the Transport Minister Ernest Marples, the co-founder of Marples Ridgway and Partners, the road building company.

            1. Smooth Newt Silver badge
              Headmaster

              Re: Free parking for electric cars

              Pedant point - Beeching was a civil servant charged with formulating the plan under instructions from his boss, the Transport Minister Ernest Marples, the co-founder of Marples Ridgway and Partners, the road building company.

              Pedant point to the pedant point. Richard Beeching was an executive at ICI,* until he was seconded from the company to be chairman of the British Railways Board. After his five year stint he returned to his job at ICI.

              *Imperial Chemical Industries (ICI) was one of the largest British manufacturing companies in the 20th century. Like most large British manufacturing companies, it has long since been sold off abroad, in this case to Akzo Nobel N.V.

      2. andy 103 Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: Free parking for electric cars

        EV purchases are mostly made by the wealthiest

        I don't have the exact numbers but if you consider people who drive and fall into one of these 2 groups:

        1. People who pay for cars on HP/PCP monthly. In the bracket of small-mini cars that cost (including running costs) under £150/month.

        2. People who drive "runaround" cars that are worth under £2k that they buy outright.

        That's a huge number of drivers. Neither of these groups can afford electric vehicles. Their petrol or diesel equivalents cost them far less, and often they need them to get to work as public transport isn't viable.

        Unless someone is going to...

        * tax groups 1 and 2 off the road - won't happen because these people then couldn't work (increasing the burden on welfare).

        * give them a free electric vehicle (never going to happen) to essentially remove non-electric vehicles from society

        ...the vehicles and buying patterns in groups 1 & 2 will be around for a long time.

        1. Cederic Silver badge

          Re: Free parking for electric cars

          You forgot the "People that live in flats", "People that live in cheap shitty housing with no drive" and "People that can't afford two cars" communities.

          If I was working I could afford two cars, using an electric for local trips and keeping the other for fun and trips to Manchester or Scotland. I can't however park anywhere near my house so charging the electric car would have to be done somewhere else, a frustrating and time consuming experience.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Free parking for electric cars

            "People that live in flats"

            Why is people living in flats always brought up? It's not like they keep their car in the dining room. People who live in flats almost always have dedicated parking and therefore ample ability to have charging points installed.

            1. Cederic Silver badge

              Re: Free parking for electric cars

              Maybe it's because during my life I've lived in flats with no dedicated parking at all.

              Sorry, I'll try and be born into a wealthy family next time.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Free parking for electric cars

                Hardly wealthy. Large housing association tower blocks around here all with car parks.

                It's just a fact that when you build up the space along the road isn't sufficient for the cars the people living in them require.

                A ten story tower block with 6 flats per floor would need a road outside for 60 cars with no other houses or flats nearby. This is not usually achievable so a car park is provided for the flats.

                1. Cederic Silver badge

                  Re: Free parking for electric cars

                  I'm British and male, I've got no hope of getting a housing association property.

                  But that aside, go to Rightmove, search for flats in Birmingham. Over 1600 results. Now filter for ones that have parking. Under 1100 results.

                  That's almost a third of flats that have no allocated parking. That's one in 8 of the properties available in Birmingham that have no allocated parking.

                  (Except that it isn't: of the 3970 flats and houses listed for sale, 2917 have parking; a quarter of Birmingham has nowhere to park)

                  1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                    Re: Free parking for electric cars

                    "(Except that it isn't: of the 3970 flats and houses listed for sale, 2917 have parking; a quarter of Birmingham has nowhere to park)"

                    I'm not sure you extend the for sale/to let market to the entire housing stock of Birmingham. Flats, especially those without parking, tend to be up for sale or to let on a regular basis while houses with off-street parking tend to have people in them who are staying for many more years. The street I live on, my side is 3 bed terraced houses with off street parking at the back. The other side of the street is 2 bed terraced houses with no off street parking. For as long as I've lived here, there has pretty much always been at least 3-4 for sale signs across the street while on my side, it's rare to see a house up for sale. Using just the far sale/to let would tell you that 95% of the houses in my street have no off street parking (It's actually ab out 66%, but considering these rows of house were built for industrial workers in about 1890, that's not really a surprise - There's very few rows like ours life, most have been razed and replaced with newer houses, all of which have off street parking.)

                  2. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: Free parking for electric cars

                    I don't get your point. If 1/8th flats have no parking then they would probably attract people who don't have a car?

                    The 7/8ths that do would be more likely to attract people with a car.

                    If they don't have a car they wouldn't be interested in an EV anyway?

                    Obviously this doesn't apply to every scenario but I know plenty of well off people who live in cities who don't bother with a car as they use public transport regularly and hire a car when they need to gt out of the city. An EV would not be necessary for them either.

              2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                Re: Free parking for electric cars

                "Sorry, I'll try and be born into a wealthy family next time."

                Or just broaden your horizons. I'm on below average salary and my ex-council mid-terrace house has parking in the back which, if I concreted it all, would easily take three cars. The three bed house, 10 mins walk from the light rail system and 12 mins walk from the shopping centre is currently worth about £100,000 at best. It cost me £20,000 thirty-odd years ago. And it's quite a nice area too. Of course, it's in the "grim north", flat caps, whippets, no jobs and the sun never shines and London is like the other side of the world, so not really in commuting distance.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Free parking for electric cars

          Tell that to the YESNP, whose cabinet is mainly made up of those from the central belt, including that waste of oxygen Humza Yousef, who keeps getting promoted despite being less use than Boris (and thats an achievemant), for example when he was transport minister (and the islands IIRC...despite being from Pollokshields (read Glasgow) he was caught driving without insurance, made a mealy mouthed answer about forgetting due to a relationship breakup, got a tap on the wrist and the other parties looked the other way when they should have hauled him over the coals....

          They keep pushing "walk or cycle" fat lot of good a pushbike is when you live 10 miles across hilly terrain from the nearest supermaket..... they make noises about "supporting rural Scotland and its transport challenges" and then go off bring in "bans".....

      3. j.bourne

        Re: Free parking for electric cars

        Unsurprisingly it's a Tory plan.

    3. RichardEM

      Re: Free parking for electric cars

      How about figuring savings in health costs so that your taxes to support the system might remain stable?

      Iam a yank and wish we had a universal health system.

      1. quxinot Silver badge

        Re: Free parking for electric cars

        >Iam a yank and wish we had a universal health system.

        Because Medicare works so well.

        Or Medicaid.

        Or the VA.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Free parking for electric cars

          I think he was pointing out the savings to the NHS of less pollution induced illnesses and that he'd quite like the USA to have something similar.

  7. Steve K Silver badge

    £6k or is it a £3k change?

    It would be interesting to know whether this is an additional £6K or is it £3k on top of the existing £3K (plug-in) EV incentive?

    I'm not convinced that - following lockdown - people will be that keen to splurge on a new vehicle regardless of powerplant, until they have more clarity on their job status.

    Even if furloughed, I'd imagine that anyone whose budget stretches to most EVs will need to replenish their savings for a while before committing to significant capital purchases (OK - ignoring leases/PCP here but the monthly payments are still significant on the more expensive EVs).

    It may therefore be that people will stretch the usage of their existing (non-EV) vehicles for longer (unless their PCP deal is coming to an end).

    Of course - like with the original £4.5k grant - the danger is that this simply becomes a subsidy for those who could afford it and were going to buy an EV anyway. Having said that, if it's an economic stimulus (with tinges of green policy-making) then they probably don't care who uses the grant anyway - a sale is a sale or rather part of the margin goes to a UK car dealer.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: £6k or is it a £3k change?

      On the principle that most governments never announce any money just once I'd guess it'll be an extra £3k.

      1. Snowy
        Joke

        Re: £6k or is it a £3k change?

        The prices of cars will only go up another 3K then :o

      2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: £6k or is it a £3k change?

        No, they are cancelling the old £3k scheme and bringing in a new £3k scheme. Clearly 3+3=6 so in Government accounting terms it's obviously £6k of "new" money.

  8. Portent

    I have an old diesel car, used for local journeys, which I would normally be interested in swapping for an EV. But with the world economy in ruins there is no way I'm swapping for something that means I have to spend more. No new cars for me until the world recovers.

    1. wolfetone

      Diesel is the way to go. At least if the world ended and diesel supplies dried up, you could stick some chip fat in it and go all Mad Max on everyone.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        That's what always confused me about Mad Max.

        The oil has run out and yet everybody immediately switches to driving V8 muscle cars that run on premium petrol - rather than all riding bicycles and driving VW Polo diesels running on chip fat.

        1. Peter X

          That's what always confused me about Mad Max.

          The oil has run out and yet ... there are still chippies?!!!

      2. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

        Actually, isn't chip fat what the diesel engine was originally invented for? Diesel's only really used as a byproduct of the oil industry, to help keep their precious profits up...

        1. SImon Hobson Silver badge

          Almost. Rudolph Diesel used peanut oil for his new engine.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The problem with this half baked idea is it will only be useful to those who can afford a new car and are likely to have a reasonably new one to put into the scrappage scheme, the oldest potentially higher emmission cars are more often than not owned by people at the lower end of the income scale and unlikely to be able to trade up to a new low emission/electric car, as happened the last time this half naked idea was trotted out, it leads to a reduction in the availability of middle aged cars to “cascade” down to replace the oldest cars which remain in use.

    As happens so often, the ones at the bottom of the pile are ignored by politicians who have zero grasp of the realities of everyday life.

    1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

      Auto da fe?

      ..it leads to a reduction in the availability of middle aged cars to “cascade” down to replace the oldest cars which remain in use.

      That's part of the problem for car manufacturers. So back in the good'ol days and the era of Rover, you buy a new car every 3 years because after that it's rusting & falling apart. Or if it was a Range Rover, helping dealers buy their Ferrari collections through service costs.

      Modern cars are a lot more reliable, and with average commuting patterns & proper servicing, can run fine for 10yrs or so.. Especially if they're simpler diesels. This is despite the best efforts of the EU to help deterioration via adulterating fuels with 'biofuels'.

      But along side that, there was the conversion of manufacturers into finance companies, and pushing PCP/lease deals. Drivers get a new car regularly, but their lease cars get dumped onto the used market regularly, pushing down used car prices. Which is a good thing for drivers given they can get a nearly-new, well maintained car at a deep discount... Especially given the way the ECB has been printing money to lend to BMW/Merc/VAG Finance so they can buy cars from the manufacturing entities and prop up the German car industry.

      Now there's the EU (and UK's) push to get people driving modern milk floats.. But they're a lot more expensive than ICE models, so subsidises those via scams like this.. Which I guess could allow savvy people to buy a cheap ICE to get the £6k bung, assuming they can afford £20k+ on the milk float. And like you say, that won't help people with less income, who could in theory benefit from the lower TCO of running an EV. And then there's the question of TCO for used EVs, ie what state the battery might be in if the previous owner's not been nice with their charging cycles. Especially given the battery pack is a substantial part of the total car's cost.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Auto da fe?

        That's part of the problem for car manufacturers. So back in the good'ol days and the era of Rover, you buy a new car every 3 years because after that it's rusting & falling apart.

        Can I just say at this point that my runaround is a Rover 75 made in 1999 which is neither rusty or falling apart?

        Since about one tenth of the cars that they made are still on the roads after 20 years, i'd suggest that they aren't the best example. Unless you meant "British Leyland", in which case i'm right with you. ;)

        1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

          Re: Auto da fe?

          Since about one tenth of the cars that they made are still on the roads after 20 years, i'd suggest that they aren't the best example. Unless you meant "British Leyland", in which case i'm right with you. ;)

          Heh, those were the days. Popped out to the shops earlier and someone was working on an interesting looking '30s-ish roadster. Cars can last, if they're looked after. From watching some YT vids, the idea that EV's are simpler than ICE's seems a bit of a myth.. And one challenge for EVs will be training up mechanics to work on them. Assuming manufacturers will let them, give or take various bits of 'right to repair' legislation.

          Also saw a Chinese battery manufacturer's announced a power pack with a 2,000,000km/16yr warranty. Suspect that's a 'commercial' rather than a technical warranty, ie caveats & internal costs to replace batteries that fail well before then. But potentially de-risks used EV buyers a little, assuming warranty is transferable.

          1. CountCadaver Bronze badge

            Re: Auto da fe?

            then there is whole issue with conflict mined rare earth metals - cobalt/coltan/tantalum etc etc from the Democratic Republic of Congo, a country thats been in civil war for over 20 years now, where children etc are used as slaves and/or conscripted by militias, where the ecosystem contains many endangered species, risked further by pollution from illegal mining operations, a point emphasised by rare earth metal brokers admitting they had no idea if their supply chains contained conflict mined metals as the chain of custody just isn't there. EV evangelists will shout down anyone who makesthis point and claim that their tesla etc doesn't contain any of those and then shift the goalposts to "its only a small amount of xxxx and musk says it will be gone soon" followed by "but ICE cars poison the air making it too toxic to breathe"

            I got booted from a DIY forum for describing EVs as "posh milkfloats", EV subsidies as regressive taking from the poor to give to the rich "but I pay road tax as its a luxury car and it costs more than the diesel so I'm doing my bit for the planet" as well as rare earth mining as "the next "race for Africa" and modern day colonialism

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Auto da fe?

              > the Democratic Republic of Congo, a country thats been in civil war for over 20 years now

              So the civil war didn't start because of EV batteries - but it might just finish because of them.

              For two reasons: both sides have more to lose and more to gain - so more incentive to reach a compromise; and foreign governments have more incentive to get involved in brokering a settlement.

              1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

                Re: Auto da fe?

                So the civil war didn't start because of EV batteries - but it might just finish because of them.

                Unlikely. DRC's had a sad history, even by African standards.. Especially during the time it was the Belgian King's personal playpen. It's resources have fuelled warlords & it's civil wars, and that's unlikely to change given the money involved.. Plus of course those strategic resources means geopolitical dabbling for control.

                But it's one of those modern problems. We want stuff made from coltan, and environmentally conscious Americans might drive their EV's to protest against coal mining.. But are blissfully unaware of massive mines like Makundo that enable our modern lifestyles. Those environmental and human problems are out of sight, out of mind. Drive EV's they're good for the (our) environment..

      2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Auto da fe?

        "And then there's the question of TCO for used EVs, ie what state the battery might be in if the previous owner's not been nice with their charging cycles."

        Although I've never used their services, I believe the AA and RAC will come out, for a price, and examine/check a second hand car for before you buy. I'd like to think that when the second-hand EV market arrives that they will be able to do a battery health check. Maybe a charge/discharge cycle to prove the capacity.

    2. Mike 137 Silver badge

      "the ones at the bottom of the pile are ignored..."

      Actually they're not being ignored - they're being priced out of freedom of movement.

      A friend's small business crashed when his local council created a "low emission zone" that put a price of £100 per day on keeping his diesel van outside his house, and from the start of 2021 the entire area within the North and South Circular Roads in London will become such a zone with older cars charged around £12 per day to enter it (plus of course the existing congestion charge). That roughly trebles the cost of entering Central London from the M25.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: "the ones at the bottom of the pile are ignored..."

        I doubt the [MD]oT has ever been in favour of freedom of movement, at least not since the days of Barbara Castle.

      2. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Bronze badge

        Re: "the ones at the bottom of the pile are ignored..."

        Have a look at the TFL scrappage scheme. They gave me 2k for my 30y/o petrol powered Toyota with emissions so low it didn't need a cat, and then I bought a modernish diesel :)

    3. Wellyboot Silver badge

      >>>reasonably new one to put into the scrappage scheme<<<

      No. Sell that one for cash and buy an MOT'd POS for £500 and use that for the trade-in.

    4. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "likely to have a reasonably new one to put into the scrappage scheme"

      If I was in a position to do so, I'd buy a cheap old banger to trade in on the scrappage scheme and sell the reasonably new one for a decent amount of cash (or keep it for those longer journeys)

  10. IGotOut Silver badge
    FAIL

    Still no answer...

    ...to us that have no where to plug it in.

    It could have a 500 mile range, but after those 500 miles it will be a £20,000 roadside ornament.

    How about VAT free electric bikes and motorbikes instead? At least those I can push close enough to sling a cable out of the window.

    1. Sean o' bhaile na gleann

      Re: Still no answer...

      "...to us that have no where to plug it in."

      Absolutely!

      Give me a charging point, or at least a long bit of cable to run from my 3rd floor flat to the car park on the other side of the building, and I'd have an electric car tomorrow.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Still no answer...

        >my 3rd floor flat

        Our demographics show that anyone living in a 3rd floor flat is unlikely to vote for us.

        So we would just like to say "fsck off peasant"

        1. Wellyboot Silver badge
          WTF?

          Re: Still no answer...

          Oh to live like a peasant, one can only dream.

          https://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/Islington/flats.html

          1. Sean o' bhaile na gleann

            Re: Still no answer...

            Shit! Someone's put my flat on the market!

    2. Fred M

      Re: Still no answer...

      There is also ready a £1500 government grant on electric motorbikes. They have to meet certain criteria to qualify but my Zero FXS did.

    3. vtcodger Silver badge

      Re: Still no answer...

      The awesome and all-knowing internet informs me the batteries for Electric bikes weigh in at 3-6kg. Presumably you could just unplug the battery and take it in to your residence at night to charge it. That might actually work in Southern California where I grew up and maybe in England. However, I would envision a likely marketing problem in winter in Vermont where I live now as well as in Canada.

  11. Steve Foster

    Restructure the Market

    My 2p...

    1. Introduce a fossil fuel car VAT supplement, starting at 2%, ratcheting up by an additional 2 percentage points every year until it hits 20% - ie gradually double the VAT on any vehicle that is in any way powered by petrol or diesel.

    2. Introduce an electric/AF car VAT discount, starting at 20%, ratcheting down by 2 percentage points every year until it's gone - ie remove the VAT for now, gradually reintroducing it. You could cap this at (say) £6k maximum if thought necessary.

    3. Drop the existing EV grant.

    4. Rework VED so that all vehicles are on the same scheme (there are currently 3 or 4 different ones running in parallel), such that:

    a) all vehicles pay, b) those that pollute more pay more, and c) those that impose extra wear and tear on the network or consume extra capacity [think heavy and/or XL vehicles] pay even more. For example, a base VED of £50, plus a fossil fuel component tied to emissions [one element for each of CO2 and NOx, plus room to add others if we find further pollutants], plus a % "XL" levy (say, 50% extra for over 2 tonnes or L>4.5m or W>2m or H>1.5m, and 25% discount for "compact" cars [<1T or small enough to fit 2 in a standard parking space]). It's probably appropriate to implement this new VED with lower starting rates that are ratchetted up by fixed increments for a few years before switching to inflationary rises, to avoid huge overnight hikes for those currently enjoying negligible rate VED on older petrol/diesel vehicles.

    1. Pete B

      Re: Restructure the Market

      Tinkering with VED really makes little difference at least at the upper end of the market - if somebody's going to spend around the £100k mark on a vehicle then they're not going to be bothered about the VED, unless you make it to high as to effectively outlaw them.

      I like the rest of your idea about an automatically reducing/increasing allowance/surcharge for the two though.

      1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

        Re: Restructure the Market

        Tinkering with VED really makes little difference at least at the upper end of the market - if somebody's going to spend around the £100k mark on a vehicle then they're not going to be bothered about the VED, unless you make it to high as to effectively outlaw them.

        That's pretty much in hand, ie banning new ICE's after a certain date. Of course that means a massive hit to fuel duty & VAT. Governments already tinker with that, ie penalising diesel drivers via increases in fuel duty, with additional sneakiness, like 'biofuels', which reduce MPG.

        But this leaves a bit of a hole in government finances, especially given cost of subsidies like this rebate. And the big elephant is the implications for the energy sector, ie cost of electrifying UK transport, which will lead to even more energy poverty as electricity prices rocket. It could be interesting to figure out a way to charge EV duty to reduce energy poverty, which I suspect will mean road charging ends up back on the table. EV's are/will be fitted with enough 'black box' functionaility to monitor both charging, and distance travelled.

        1. Steve Foster

          Re: Restructure the Market

          Exactly. Fuel duty is going to dry up as a source of income. That's another reason that VED needs to be restructured (allowing EVs to pay nothing really is not a viable option).

          If you want to encourage the switch from oil to EV, in a gradual way and not have a mad rush to switch at the last minute, forcing the price of ICE up and EV down is necessary. Doing so in a clearly defined manner that is affordable and doesn't simply introduce further problems down the road seems like the logical thing to do.

          I agree that road charging is probably required, and that's not necessarily a bad thing if implemented sensibly (eg we ensure a contribution from foreign vehicles using our infrastructure that way).

          1. LucreLout Silver badge

            Re: Restructure the Market

            If you want to encourage the switch from oil to EV, in a gradual way and not have a mad rush to switch at the last minute, forcing the price of ICE up and EV down is necessary.

            Sure, provided you're comfortable with punishing the poorest who are least able to avoid your new taxes. I'm not completely sure I am.

            I agree that road charging is probably required, and that's not necessarily a bad thing if implemented sensibly

            And yet completely incompatible with privacy. It'll also be very difficult to check that a foreign registered vehicle is attributable to someone you can fine (ie they pay before they can depart the UK).

            Passive tolling based on registration requires that everyone obey the law rather than use a cloned plate, that all vehicles are properly registered, and that everyone consents to tracking. Active tolling leads to queues at the barriers which leads to an increase in emissions.

            1. Steve Foster

              Re: Restructure the Market

              "Sure, provided you're comfortable with punishing the poorest who are least able to avoid your new taxes. I'm not completely sure I am."

              By and large, I would expect that the poorest are not actually buying new cars at all, so pushing up the cost of ICE isn't likely to affect them (at least, not directly).

              [Road charging is] "completely incompatible with privacy."

              Not necessarily. You could certainly make it so if you wanted to do so (and I can see that there are some who would like to do so). However, the EU countries using road charging seem to be doing so without major problems, and without (AFAIK) totally compromising privacy. I don't see why we could not do likewise (non-functional public bodies notwithstanding).

              1. LucreLout Silver badge

                Re: Restructure the Market

                By and large, I would expect that the poorest are not actually buying new cars at all, so pushing up the cost of ICE isn't likely to affect them (at least, not directly).

                Residual values are a percentage of purchase prices, so the more expensive the vehicle to buy new the more expensive the vehicle will be to buy second hand. With EVs currently the purchase price all but includes the fuel cost and road tax to run it. Sure, you have repairs and insurance to pay, but a newish vehicle will see few repairs (not none), leaving insurance your only real cost.

                This will leave the less well off trapped on ICE, paying VED, VAT on fuel, Fuel Duty etc The residual value of their vehicles will fall away towards zero at a much faster rate too, once EVs begin to arrive in the second hand market.

                Don't get me wrong, there are EVs I'd buy tomorrow (2nd hand as I view new cars to be a fools errand), and there are ICE cars I want to own before they disappear forever into the past. I'm not heavily invested in either way of looking at this.

                However, the EU countries using road charging seem to be doing so without major problems, and without (AFAIK) totally compromising privacy.

                The EU countries doing road tolling are doing active tolling rather than passive. You stop at the booth. That'd be fine, except they have much more space given over to roads resulting in fewer traffic jams - France for example has 3 times the road space that we do, creating lots of opportunities to travel from place to place by a range of roads where we typically have one realistic route. This reduces congestion at the tolls and provides plenty of untolled roads if you would rather reduce costs and have a longer trip.

                The only way to ensure transport costs don't hit the poor hardest is to remove them. Either the state pulls in its belt and gets used to living on less, or move the taxes raised onto something else equally unavoidable - just be aware that may also then hit the poor harder.

                Take sugar or fat tax as an example, given what I suspect will be a push towards more healthy living post Covid - I've literally no idea what a big mac costs and I've eaten a few of those over the years. One of my friends who is very much lower quartile income definitely knows tot he penny what his big mac meal costs when he buys one. Taxing it more won't really affect me.

                Tax a punishment or for behaviour modification may work, but it works first on those with the smallest incomes.

              2. Teiwaz Silver badge

                Re: Restructure the Market

                However, the EU countries using road charging seem to be doing so without major problems

                Doesn't mean the UK Gov won't

                Actually fairly sure they will. Since they can't seem to create any legislation that doesn't run into Privacy and Human Rights issues.

              3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                Unhappy

                "However, the EU countries using road charging seem to be doing so without major problems,"

                Which the UK has decided to leave.

                And whose civil servants have a known addiction to knowing everything, all the time, forever about its citizens.

            2. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: Restructure the Market

              And yet completely incompatible with privacy. It'll also be very difficult to check that a foreign registered vehicle is attributable to someone you can fine (ie they pay before they can depart the UK).

              That ship has already err.. sailed given new vehicles have to be fitted with black boxes per EU Diktat. Floated as a 'safety' feature, where cars could phone for help in accidents, but strangely enough, also enables everything needed for road charging.. Excluding back-end. Expect tenders to follow, and think of the benefits if data's combined with track & trace! Automatically alert insurers.. I mean people because they've spent >15m <2m apart inside a tin box!

              1. CountCadaver Bronze badge

                Re: Restructure the Market

                Get in to go to work

                "Carbon allowance exceeded, weather forecast indicates optimal cycling weather, start permission denied, further attempts will incur a £150 fine and an extended vehicle lockout"

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Restructure the Market

          Liebour MPs are already on that bandwagon "I know we just looked at it <6 years ago and I know the public dislike it, but I FEEL that its time to look at it again so we can faciltate a modal shift onto public transportaton" (how well does that idea work now geniuses? Big shock many donations are made to various parties by public transport congolmerates, plus the old liebour view "give them cars and owned houses and they'll vote Tory, keep them in insecure rented accomodation and on the bus and they'll keep voting Labour")

        3. hoola Bronze badge

          Re: Restructure the Market

          Realistically the only way the battery EVs become viable is if every house has charging point and somewhere to park the EV. That simply is not going to happen. It does not matter if all your journeys are short, you still have to charge it.

          The entire thing around hybrid is equally a scam to make expensive cars fit into tax breaks. How many people with a plug-in hybrid actually plug it in? It is the same as all this stop/start crap. It reduces emissions to make cars fiy into tax bands but the driver can turn it off.

          Whilst not directly related, the bonkers scheme to not put gas into new homes and attempt to phase out gas in the long term in existing homes because it emits more CO2 is all well and good except for the minor detail that electricity is 5 x the price of gas per KWH. I don't care how well insulated something is (many houses cannot be insulated properly), it will still cost more to heat with electricity.

          I have a typical 1980s house and very briefly looked at electric with the boiler expired and came to the conclusion that the companies selling electric heating systems as more economical than gas are lying scroats with big marketing budgets.

      2. Steve Foster

        Re: Restructure the Market

        VED is such a mess right now (with multiple differing schemes) that it just seems sensible to bundle fixing it in with larger changes.

        While I get your point about the seriously wealthy not caring one way or another (as you say, the VED is almost immaterial to them), you do want it overall to be as fair as possible, and to be constructively arranged (even if it's principally "virtue signalling").

        At the moment, the effective message of the various schemes is "hang on to your old diesel"!

    2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Restructure the Market

      1. Introduce a fossil fuel car VAT supplement, starting at 2%, ratcheting up by an additional 2 percentage points every year until it hits 20% - ie gradually double the VAT on any vehicle that is in any way powered by petrol or diesel.

      That's what triggered the "yellow vest" protests in France, and could well cause haulage strikes in the UK. Certainly, some government is going to have to tackle the road haulage industry at some point, but I think it will need a lot more carrot & less stick than this.

      Introduce an electric/AF car VAT discount, starting at 20%, ratcheting down by 2 percentage points every year until it's gone - i.e. remove the VAT for now, gradually reintroducing it.

      Still wouldn't encourage me to buy a battery electric car. Do it for plug-in hybrids and I might be interested, but then I'll probably buy one anyway, so it could become another subsidy for people who don't need it.

      Those that impose extra wear and tear on the network or consume extra capacity [think heavy and/or XL vehicles] pay even more.

      40+ tonne lorries do so much damage to the roads that the wear & tear from cars is insignificant. The labs that do road wear & tear measurement don't even consider light vehicles any more. Structuring car tax based on relative damage done by bigger cars is in the "rearranging deckchairs on the Titanic" category.

      1. Glen 1 Silver badge

        Re: Restructure the Market

        " going to have to tackle the road haulage industry at some point"

        I recon that would be about the time HS2 starts running, with the extra capacity on the slower lines. Which could be anywhere from when they say, to when hell freezes over.

    3. LucreLout Silver badge

      Re: Restructure the Market

      Complicated to administer and police. Just keep knocking up the taxes on petrol and diesel and you'd achieve the same effect.

      The obvious problem, for those of a lefty persuasion, is that any increase in transport costs will have a disproportionate affect on the poor than the rich. I'm not rich by any sensible definition, but given the mileage I do and that I take the train to work, I could go to £10 per litre because its mostly leisure mileage. The empty roads would offset about 20-25% of my fuel use, which I've factored into my pulled out of my ass litre price. I doubt many of my local Tesco staff could travel far at that price, which seems unfair as they didn't cause the pandemic.

      If you want to stimulate the economy then cutting direct taxes has been proven to work better than anything else, provided you cut the basic rate. The easiest change would be to simply increase the tax free earnings allowance then all workers benefit along with the retired.

      1. Steve Foster

        Re: Restructure the Market

        "Complicated to administer and police."

        Not really, it just goes into the VAT regime, which is the motor trade's problem. HMRC (at least the Excise portion) have traditionally been fairly effective on that front (some notable issues aside).

        "Just keep knocking up the taxes on petrol and diesel and you'd achieve the same effect."

        Well, that ought to be happening too. The difficulty in doing so is that it's pretty damn visible to taxpayers, so the governments of the day (of whatever flavour) tend not to be overly keen on doing so.

        1. LucreLout Silver badge

          Re: Restructure the Market

          Not really, it just goes into the VAT regime, which is the motor trade's problem.

          It is, but it shows up in higher residual values because they are a percentage of purchase price - the balance of what that price is has never been seen relevant (manufacturer and dealership profit, manufacturing or shipping costs, taxes etc). That then becomes the poorer car buyers problem because they're getting an older vehicle for a given amount of money which will cost more to run in repairs and fuel consumption.

          The difficulty in doing so is that it's pretty damn visible to taxpayers, so the governments of the day (of whatever flavour) tend not to be overly keen on doing so.

          Yes, I was lower quartile in earnings when 2 Shjags Prescott was determined to keep his foot ont he fuel duty escalator. It was a difficult few years, racing to get ahead of rent increases, an ever bigger fuel bill just to get to work (public transport wasn't an option) etc. I well recall the fuel protests and blockades of the day that almost brought down the government.

          There's no easy answer as with much in life, but penalizing people for going to work or working has never been my favorite way to raise revenues. IHT I quite like if it could be done fairly, VAT to a degree I quite like provided we could tier it - VAT on caviar should not be the same as VAT on potatoes for example.

          1. Wellyboot Silver badge

            Re: Restructure the Market

            >>>VAT on caviar should not be the same as VAT on potatoes for example.<<<

            They're both 0% VAT rated, like most uncooked foodstuff in the UK.

            Caviar is Sturgeon eggs, thats a very specific item to apply VAT. Would VAT apply to lumpfish caviar & cod roe? all of which are quite healthy foods.

      2. Jellied Eel Silver badge

        Re: Restructure the Market

        The obvious problem, for those of lefty persuasion, is that any increase in transport costs will have a disproportionate affect on the poor than the rich.

        Blame Ed Milliband and his 'Climate Change Act'. Plus a succession of useful idiots who don't understand the difference between reducing CO2, and decarbonising. Which is what's largely driving these policies, ie a desire (not need) to hit decarbonisation targets. Which means decarbonising transportation and heating, which then means a massive increase in electricity demand. Then we have idiots who insist that electricity generation should be as expensive and unreliable as possible. But the 'renewables' lobby thank them.

        That obviously leads to massive increases in electricity pricing, which is regressive and increases energy poverty.. Up to and including excess winter deaths that can routinely exceed those from Covid. Or energy poverty contributes, ie if homes aren't well heated, people are more likely to get ill. And given energy is an input cost to just about every economic activity, higher prices make the UK less competitive.

        A far better economic stimulus would be for the government to force the price of electricity down. Then all areas benefit, along with EVs.. And possibly excluding the BoE given our bonkers inflation target where it's considered a good thing to make stuff ever more expensive. Given domestic energy costs are growing to an ever larger proportion of people's incomes, rises help meet inflation targets, but don't help people.

      3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Restructure the Market

        "Just keep knocking up the taxes on petrol and diesel and you'd achieve the same effect."

        It causes withdrawal symptoms when govts, addicted to the revenues from those taxes, discover they've succeeded beyond their wildest nightmares.

    4. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

      Re: Restructure the Market

      I'm not sure that will really change things much, I have a nasty feeling it would end up being just a "boil the frog" type of thing, where people just get used to paying a bit more every year, have a minor grumble every time it goes up and then forget about it again until next time.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Please not Musk shaped

    There are other equally good EV out there. Tesla's are typical American cars. They are built down to a price. Corners are cut. Just look at the latest law suits from Quebec about the almost non existent paint (or very, very soft paint). I nearly bought a Model S in 2018 but I decided that it wasn't for me.

    I drive an EV that was made in Graz, Austria. 250 miles on a charge (At home 90% of the time) and would not go back to a fossil fuelled vehicle.

    VW (group), Vauxhall, Peugeot and others are making EV's that are far more reasonably priced than Tesla's.

    If you are going to buy an EV please look beyond Tesla. They are not the answer to life, the universe and everything.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This does not happen

    You drive into a Jet filling station and find that you can't actually fill up there because you are signed up with Murco. So you buy a Jet card it to find that you still can't fill up at Sainsburys, 'cos Sainsbury's doesn't recognise either Jet or Murco

    So why do electric car charging points exist in any number of walled silos?

    1. Steve Foster

      Re: This does not happen

      Maybe because of the modern obsession with the [XYZ]aaS subscription model?

      Of course, it's possible that eventually all the existing schemes will disappear, and you'll pay for the "fill" on a PAYG basis just like the existing ICE model.

      1. CountCadaver Bronze badge

        Re: This does not happen

        Pigs might fly...or hell might freeze over...

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: This does happen

      You drive into a Jet filling station and drive out a very few minutes later with a few hundred miles range in the car.

  14. ratfox Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    That's sure to jump start Tesla sales...

    Are there any UK manufacturers of electric cars?

    1. BenDwire Bronze badge

      Re: That's sure to jump start Tesla sales...

      They've just introduced an electric London Cab if that counts? And Morgan are considering one, as are Aston Martin and even Land Rover.

      But I think Nissan's leaf is made in the UK, which at least currently employs some locals.

      1. Steve Foster

        Re: That's sure to jump start Tesla sales...

        "Black Cab"'s are now Chinese (LTI got bought out - by Geely, IIRC).

        Morgan's numbers are so low as to be a rounding error on a rounding error. Aston Martin isn't significant either. And of course, Land Rover is Indian now (being owned by Tata), although still built here.

        The Nissan Leaf is currently assembled in Sunderland.

        1. Glen 1 Silver badge

          Re: That's sure to jump start Tesla sales...

          "The Nissan Leaf is currently assembled in Sunderland."

          For Now.

          After all, the Sunderland plant is "unsustainable" if/when no-deal Brexit happens.

      2. dajames Silver badge

        Re: That's sure to jump start Tesla sales...

        They've just introduced an electric London Cab if that counts?

        They try to keep it quiet ... but the LEVC TX taxis are actually hybrids (or, rather, electric vehicles with a petrol "range extender"),

        The 64-mile range on batteries is pretty good, though; about twice what most electric private cars can offer.

    2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: That's sure to jump start Tesla sales...

      Are there any UK manufacturers of electric cars?

      BMW make the electric Mini in Oxford.

  15. Maximum Delfango

    And what happens to all the unwanted petrol cars?

    ^ Do we sell them cheap to Europe?

    1. Cederic Silver badge

      Re: And what happens to all the unwanted petrol cars?

      No, you sell them to the people for whom an electric car is impractical.

      Not that you'll get a lot for yours, the market'll have a glut and nobody can afford a new (second hand) car anyway.

    2. CountCadaver Bronze badge

      Re: And what happens to all the unwanted petrol cars?

      No, you just send them to Africa where people will cut off the cats, EGR and all the other emissions control stuff, fill them with poor quality fuel and run them into the ground (as is happening with old lorries, tractors, vans etc etc etc right now)

      All it does is shift the pollution elsewhere....

      Angola kicks more CO2 than Scotland (0.08% vs 0.07% of world emissions) and it will keep increasing as more and more old cars head their way.....(frankly I'm in the "adapt and mitigate" camp rather than the fanatical millnerian camp (i.e. Greta) or the "lets mess with the climate despite having no idea what the repercussions might be" )

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: And what happens to all the unwanted petrol cars?

        > No, you just send them to Africa where people will cut off the cats

        Very nearly correct: the cats are cut off here and then the car is sent off to Africa.

  16. Jemma Silver badge

    Electric cars....

    20% say they'll buy them. According to the research done by the US Army 18-20% of the population is the retard ratio...

    Anyone else seeing the correlation here.

    My current car is a Wolseley 18/85/2 - ram air intake with updated needle, LEDs all round incl headlights, would have a supercharged B series diesel if I could afford a proper resto and the bits (assuming of course you can find them). So my next will be a Humber Sceptre 2 - 1592/1725 6 speed manual OD. Electric cars are utterly idiotic they just transfer the pollution and waste energy. I used to get 32mpg out of the Sceptre average - 36 out of the shitheap 2005 Hyunshite Accent that's been in the garage since 2017 with an unfixable engine fault..

    Bubonic Boris for the love of humanity please just kill yourself already - you have tarried far too long for any good you've been doing.

    Now I just need a Mosin Sniper and Musks address. Feel kinda sorry for the kid but as they say "lest the evil persist".

    I fucking HATE electric cars. (if you hadn't already guessed).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Electric cars....

      The UK hasn't burned any coal (for leccy generation) for well over a month. Some days 50% is renewable. My EV is powered by 100% renewable leccy. I can guarantee that as the power comes from my Solar Panels.

      You views on EV's is really dated. Please educate yourself on how clean EV's really are. Don't watch Fox News or other pro Oil news outlets. You are locked in the past. Fine but what happens when you can't get Petrol? If you really want to drive ancient relics then look at converting it to Electricity. It isn't that difficult.

      Stop sticking your head in the sand. When Tory Politicians are promoting EV's then the writing is on the wall for gassers.

      1. Wellyboot Silver badge

        Re: Electric cars....

        >>>Some days 50% is renewable<<< Yes, in the long bright summer days when there's always a breeze, solar panel work properly for 15 hours & we only use half the electric compared to winter.

        If you have enough solar panel to be self sufficient I'd suspect you aren't in any socio economic group that has to balance their finances on a knife edge.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Electric cars....

          Also sounds like they've been guzzling musk's Kool aid....the sort that glosses over any issues with EV....

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Electric cars....

          > Yes, in the long bright summer days when there's always a breeze, solar panel work properly for 15 hours & we only use half the electric compared to winter.

          Another dull doldrums believer. If you're that paranoid that electricity will 'run out' then get a hydrogen powered car. All the benefits of an EV plus the quick refillability of an ICE (well, an LPG ICE at least). Hydrogen filling stations already exist and although the fuel is tankered at the moment, on-site production at the filling station isn't too far off. Plus you can dribble wherever you go.

      2. SImon Hobson Silver badge

        Re: Electric cars....

        The UK hasn't burned any coal (for leccy generation) for well over a month

        Yeah, great statistic - the sort trotted out by renewables PR greenwashers.

        Coal usage has been falling generally for a long time. In summer, most coal plants are shut down - because they aren't needed when lecky consumption is down. And we're in the hardest recession in memory, with a significant chunk of all industries shut down. It would be more of a surprise given the combination of factors if we were buring any coal at all.

        But, as I write this, I look at the grid stats and guess what ? It's after sunset so zero solar. It's calm, and wind is doing less than 5% of the fairly low demand. But CCGT (i.e. gas, a hydrocarbon fuel) is doing 58% of demand.

        The reality is that we are still very heavily dependent on fossil fuels and that is not going to change until we have a heck of a lot more nuclear. Adding a load of demand for charging lecky cars, and that's going to come from burning more fossil fuels. I do wonder how many of the "nuclear bad" group are also in the "lecky cars good" camp ?

        1. Robert D Bank

          Re: Electric cars....

          how many nuclear power stations have been FULLY decommissioned, with the old fuel stored safely for the next few thousand years, and at what cost?

          and nuclear is not carbon free by any stretch. How do you think the fuel source is prospected, mined, transported and processed in the huge nuclear power stations that are mostly built and maintained using largely carbon generated energy?

          1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

            Re: Electric cars....

            and nuclear is not carbon free by any stretch. How do you think the fuel source is prospected, mined, transported and processed in the huge nuclear power stations that are mostly built and maintained using largely carbon generated energy?

            Err.. Wut? But EV's are basically wood burners, much as they were waaay back in the days of steam powered cars. So the useless BBC carries on promoting 'renewables', praising it's 'no coal' figures. But ignoring Drax, formerly coal burning, now wood burning with a reduction in effeciency because wood has a lower energy density than coal. But it's Green! And Drax gets massive subsidies for burning forests, and has a person sitting on our 'Climate Change Committee' to make sure government policy continues to throw money their way..

            So even though there's no coal burned, there's a lot of gas because it's been calm weather, and the windmills aren't spinning. The 'renewables' lobby are of course, because they want even more money thrown their way. Which will mean we'll need more gas turbines standing by for when 'renewables' can't deliver power. Or if there's too much wind, the bird mincers get 'constraint' payments because their energy isn't needed.

            And thanks to our useless government, we've been importing electricity via our interconnectors because of the UK's high prices.. Which is strange, because the 'renewables' lobby keep insisting that their product is cheap.

            And of course they hate nuclear, because they put out glowing press releases about the latest subsidy.. I mean wind/solar farm being 'enough to power 5,000 homes!', whereas Sizewell C's 3.2GW build would be enough to power 5 million. Or maybe 3m, if people are charging EVs.

            Then there's carbon accounting trickery. Windfarms have a large carbon & environmental footprint, so I suspect if you compare 3.2GW of nuclear vs 3.2GW of wind or solar (not forgetting stand-by requirements), nuclear would have a much lower footprint. Ok, there's some on-going for fuel, but that fuel has a massive energy density/potential compared to 'renewables'.. Especially if you look at the likes of Green Drax, which needs massive volumes of trees harvested, chipped, compressed, dried, transported and finally burned.

            And I'm curious if nuclear plants really are 'maintained using largely carbon generated electricity' when it would seem... silly to pay for electricity when you're generating it. I suspect they simply tap off steam to a smaller genset for site power.. Then grid for backup, and diesel to back that up.

          2. SImon Hobson Silver badge

            Re: Electric cars....

            how many nuclear power stations have been FULLY decommissioned, with the old fuel stored safely for the next few thousand years, and at what cost?

            Ah, that good old standby diversionary tactic !

            The first thing to bear in mind is that typically the pro-wind lobby like to compare 50 year old nuclear designs with the newest windmill design - and argue that because old designs had problems, all nuclear must have all the same problems. That is really what most people would call a lie.

            When we started with nuclear, in what could well be considered a lack of forward thinking (I wouldn't disagree with it) they didn't really consider decommissioning in the design. That in itself makes decommissioning more expensive than it needs to be.

            But the anti-nucular lobby managed another PR hit by demanding that we deal with nuclear "waste" in teh most difficult and costly manner possible. Lest say you have done the Sunday roast, and have a roasting tin that's been in the oven and is nice and hot - do you a) leave it to one side to cool down before trying to clean it, or do you b) insist on cleaning it while it's still too hot to touch without special protective measures (an oven mitt) ? Logically you let it cool down till it needs no special handling - but the anti-nucular lobby have managed by "lies and halftruths" to get the masses so worked up that they demand TPTB deal with nucular while it's still too hot to handle.

            For example, consider the old Magnox stations like Calder Hall. AIUI they did have a plan in mind when they built them - the plan being that at the end of life they shut it down and just leave it to cool for a bit, when it's cooled down enough you remove the fuel, and remove all the ancillary stuff leaving just the reactor and containment. So you'd be left with a block of concrete something like the size of a house, post a guard in case someone tries to graffiti it, but otherwise it's a risk to no-one and no use to a terrorist. Apart from this small house, the rest of the site can be returned to greenfield if you want. After 100 years, it's still so radioactive (yes, that's sarcasm) that you can just cut a hole in the side, walk in and carry out the carbon moderator blocks. But no, that sensible plan is no good - never mind that we could put 1p in a savings account, and thanks to the wonders of compound interest that by the end of the universe it will have grown to pay for your bill at Milliways ... oh sorry, went off at a tangent there. But it would be fairly easy to set aside some money now that would pay for all the costs in 100 years time. Instead certain groups insist on us doing it NOW and having to handle the benign stuff that is more or less the same as common coal as nucular waste needing careful and expensive treatment and storage. And having made people do stuff the most difficult and expensive way possible - then use the cost to "prove" that nucular can't be cheap.

            And that's before we get into the discussion about the fuel "waste". How we handle nucular fuel is roughly the equivalent to going to a petrol station, dispensing a few gallons into a bucket, using a thimble to pour some into your car, and then throwing the rest away. Naturally several gallons (less the thimbleful) of petrol is hazardous stuff so will need expensive handling and storage "for ever". Yes, it's crazy, but that is how we use nuclear fuel - we throw most of it away with all the costs of disposal and storage that entails, rather than actually using it. I believe that if we built the right sort of reactors, we have enough processed fuel in storage (but labelled as waste) to supply all our (the UK's) lecky for something like a century. And at the end, we'd have a small amount of waste left over.

            and nuclear is not carbon free by any stretch

            And neither is wind. It would be interesting to see an accurate comparison taking into account all the factors through whole of life. Simple things like : a windmill uses a lot of steel and concrete in it's foundations - nothing like the quantity used in a nuclear power station, but then it'll never put out anything like the energy the nuclear power station will. So if you take all the windmills that would be needed to match the energy output of the nuclear station, how big a pile of steel and concrete would that be ? That's just one "for example" (and ignoring the non-recyclable composites sypically used in the blades) - no I don't have the answers, but I do know that there are orders of magnitude difference in the power outputs.

            If you are still with me, yes you might just get the feeling that I think most anti-nuclear people are "severely misguided". Many because they are misinformed by lies, some because they have a vested interest in staying misinformed.

            lastly, even the eye watering cost of a new nuclear power station is something that needn't be. For the record, I agree with the anti group - it's a "sh*tload" of money ! But it's not inherent in nuclear power, it's only inherent in how we've done it up till now. So far our designs have basically been large reactors that need complex safety systems - and that adds cost. So there's a driver that says the bigger you make the reactor, the less the safety systems cost in terms of £/MWHr - with the result that we now see (or don't as they aren't exactly getting built en-masse) multi-GW rated plants at "GDP of some countries" prices.

            There is an alternative in the form of small modular reactors - which many groups are investigating/designing. With a small enough reactor you can "fuel it for life" and thus remove all the problems/costs associated with in-service refuelling, you can make it small enough that it's made in a factory and delivered complete on a lorry and thus remove a lot of the costs associated with on-site construction of pressure vessels etc, you can make it inherently or intrinsically safe (so you can just pull the plug on the ancillaries and it won't "blow up"), and you can make it low enough in cost that it's possible for modest enterprises to install them without needing underpinning by government level guarantees. Hopefully we'll see some progress on that front soon.

            1. Jellied Eel Silver badge

              Re: Electric cars....

              The first thing to bear in mind is that typically the pro-wind lobby like to compare 50 year old nuclear designs with the newest windmill design.

              That's a strange one. The BBC ran an energy 'fact checker' which made that claim and I was tempted to ask for a correction. It reckoned windmills were more modern than nuclear power, which is clearly untrue by any measure. Ok, so I call them 'windmills' because they are (except the milling bit), but that aside, the first wind turbines were from early last century.

              I didn't bother writing to them because given the BBC's lack of clue on energy matters, it would have been a waste of time. Which is a shame given they're meant to be trustworthy and impartial. I guess having the 'renewables' lobby write copy for you beats working for a living though.

  17. Dacarlo

    Perfect timing?

    "Demand for EVs outstripped supply and there are long waiting list and lead times for new high-profile EVs."

    If demand is outstripping supply then this plan is window dressing at best. Surely now is the worst time to buy a this type of car due to demand pushing prices up which gives poorer returns on the taxpayer 'investment'. Also who gets this money? Nissan? Renault? I'm failing to see how those foreign car companies taking tax cash benefits the uk as a whole.

    1. Jemma Silver badge

      Re: benefits the UK..

      To quote-ish

      "It doesn't, but you are meant to think it does..."

      Think a guy in a Zeyd cloth hoodie.. Or 1977.

    2. Wellyboot Silver badge

      Re: Perfect timing?

      >>>I'm failing to see how those foreign car companies taking tax cash benefits the uk as a whole<<<

      Renault - own 43% of Nissan - Sunderland (Renault based Nissans).

      PSA - Ellesmere Port (Peugeots badged as Vauxhall)

      BMW - Oxford (Mini)

      Toyota - Derby

      Mercedes owns the Crewe Bentley plant but it's not really set up to make Polo

      Honda are closing their Swindon plant to protect jobs in the home country as sales fall, all the others will do the same if pushed.

      Together these plants (and others making engines/gearboxs) with supporting 3rd party engineering industry employ the thick end of a million people, they also all have a lot of spare production capacity.

      It's a state subsidy to keep jobs here, just like every other country does while pretending otherwise.

    3. VulcanV5

      Re: Perfect timing?

      "Also who gets this money? Nissan? Renault? I'm failing to see how those foreign car companies taking tax cash benefits the uk as a whole."

      The money goes to the UK car dealerships as well as the motor manufacturer.

      By dint of manipulating the obsequious British motoring Press into pronouncing its £33,000 electric car as the "future of motoring", Kia has pretty much sorted out for itself a nice profitable future -- along with all its dealerships in the UK.

      All that's needed are infantilised motoring 'journalists' (sic) who'll say anything in exchange for a foreign trip freebie and loan of a Press car for a week or so, and a national governing political party susceptible to motor industry lobbyists and indebted to major corporate donors whose business potfolios include car dealerships.

  18. Grease Monkey

    Electric or Hybrid?

    The article doesn't make it clear whether BogJob is talking about electric cars or electric cars and hybrids, Well it seems to state electric cars, but then discusses stats for electric AND hybrid cars.

    Two problems depending on the answer to this question.

    If the answer is both then hybrids aren't particularly good for the environment. Depending on how and where they are driven their emissions are often similar to those of their IC equivalents and commonly not much better.

    If the answer is electric only then the next big problem is what we do about generating capacity. On dark winter evenings when pressure is high the UKs grid is often close to brown out. The only way we have to fill any shortfalls in capacity is bringing extra stations on line which (whisper it) burn stuff and emit CO2. Now some may argue that we can burn renewables like waste or wood chips. The problem with these is they are not really as good as they sound. Waste might be better than burning fossil fuels, but it still releases CO2. And wood chips again sound good, but growing a tree takes years, is usually imported from abroad using a dirty heavy oil burning ship and then the CO2 it absorbed over a number of years is released into the atmosphere in seconds. Again better than fossil fuels but not by much. So we have two issues in one here. At times the only way to recharge these extra EVs will be by emitting pollution and the alternative to that will be letting the grid collapse.

    And then there's the question of who benefits. If you can't afford to drive round in a car costing more than £6K then you're probably driving an older car that pollutes more heavily than a modern car and also you probably can't afford the finance on a new EV even with a £6K scrappage incentive. It's not like there are any cheap new EVs about. On the other hand if your existing car is worth more than £6K you probably won't go in for it. Why scrap your existing IC car for £6K if you can trade it in to a dealer for more? Or will it be another scheme that's open to abuse? If you're well off enough to buy a new EV then you might just go out and buy a £500 shed and then trade it in for the £6K, thus giving you a £5.5K discount on a nice new EV.

    1. CountCadaver Bronze badge

      Re: Electric or Hybrid?

      You can buy a second hand leaf cheap.....why? because buyers are rightly VERY wary of second hand EVs (many are left with <80 mile ranges due to battery pack wear....)

      Last year I was seeing 2016 leafs on sale for <£5000

      1. Grease Monkey

        Re: Electric or Hybrid?

        "You can buy a second hand leaf cheap.....why? because buyers are rightly VERY wary of second hand EVs (many are left with <80 mile ranges due to battery pack wear....)

        Last year I was seeing 2016 leafs on sale for <£5000"

        Which sounds wonderful, but as you have rightly pointed out they tend to need new battery packs the replacement cost of which is getting close to that of a new car. And 80 miles is very optimistic. Plenty of people have found the range of a brand new Leaf to be little more than that. There are plenty of stories of Leafs (Leaves?) with ranges of scarcely more than a quarter of that.

        But the actual reason for my reply is this...

        The discussed subsidy will as ever only apply to new cars. The government is not interested in getting money moving, because that doesn't actually significantly impact what they like to refer to as "the economy". Their idea of "the economy" is money going into the coffers of big business.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Electric or Hybrid?

      > If the answer is electric only then the next big problem is what we do about generating capacity. On dark winter evenings when pressure is high the UKs grid is often close to brown out.

      The statement that the grid is "often close to burnout" is simply not true. In 2018 the PTE asked National Grid to analyse the causes of grid 'stress events' and in their 2019 report the PTE reported that this action hadn't been done because there were insufficient stress events to analyse.

      https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/816012/Panel_of_Technical_Experts_report_2019.pdf

      > The only way we have to fill any shortfalls in capacity is bringing extra stations on line which (whisper it) burn stuff and emit CO2. Now some may argue that we can burn renewables like waste or wood chips. The problem with these is they are not really as good as they sound. Waste might be better than burning fossil fuels, but it still releases CO2.

      First of all, average wind speed across the UK never drops to zero. https://www.eci.ox.ac.uk/publications/downloads/sinden06-windresource.pdf, end of page 6. So if hydro + nuclear can't bridge the gap for a short period, then some combustion-based generation will be required. Note that this only has to provide a top-up, not meet the full load.

      Secondly, "bringing extra stations on-line" is not the only way of meeting capacity. We have interconnects with Ireland, France and Holland meaning that there would have to be no wind over the whole of western Europe to need significant amounts of traditional plant to be started-up.

      Thirdly, even if solar + wind generation occasionally fell to zero and we needed electricity from traditional plant - so what? There's still a huge net saving in CO2.

      You appear to be arguing that because solar + wind can't meet all demand we shouldn't have it at all. Apart from the obvious illogic, transitioning from carbon-based generation to non-carbon takes time. You can't build 50GW of wind+solar capacity overnight, but you can by 2030 which is when UK renewable capacity is expected to reach 50GW and exceed average demand by a comfortable margin.

      1. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Bronze badge

        Re: Electric or Hybrid?

        Of course UK generator capacity has been run down in the last few years. The government has (very quietly) assembled a list of 'priority users' for the powercuts expected imminently.

        Interlinks don't solve the problem. More generators would, but we aren't building any.

      2. Grease Monkey

        Re: Electric or Hybrid?

        "The statement that the grid is "often close to burnout" is simply not true."

        Nobody said anything about "burn out" and the grid has admitted that it's close to brown out often during the winter months. Brown out incidentally is where they drop voltages in order to maintain supply.

        The problem is simple. The more we rely on wind and solar the bigger it will bet. In winter high pressure means two things; firstly little or no wind; secondly low temperatures. This increases demand particularly in the evenings, more heating required due to low temperatures. And of course it reduces supply, no sun in the evenings, but no wind either.

        Now what the UK needs it more storage capacity. Pumped storage such as the famous "electric mountain" at Dinorwig is a brilliant solution, but that costs an awful lot of money and nobody seems to want to invest as it's not seen as a big money spinner. There were moves to import power from Europe a while ago, but I suspect any advances there will be killed off by Boris's ambition for a hard brexit.

        Without investing in storage or some other renewable technology the only solution is to control demand. And one way to is of course smart devices which will not use power at peak times. I do that manually because I have solar panels, high current devices are only used when there's plenty of light around. The problem with an electric car charger is simply that most of us will need them overnight. Maybe having a timer to bring the charger in at midnight would be a start, but as one EV owning friend told me the basic charger (pretty much a cable) came with his car free. The smart charger which had such clever things as timers and rapid charging added thousands to the bill.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Electric or Hybrid?

          > Nobody said anything about "burn out"

          Apologies for that - I was auto-corrected. It should have been obvious in that I was supposedly quoting the OP.

          Citation required for your statement that the Grid has admitted they are often close to brown out. It's not reflected in the PDFs I linked to.

          > In winter high pressure means two things; firstly little or no wind

          Did you not read the linked PDF that clearly states wind speeds never drop to zero? Even in Winter. This is because wind farms are not sited randomly.

    3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Electric or Hybrid?

      "Waste might be better than burning fossil fuels, but it still releases CO2. And wood chips again sound good, but growing a tree takes years, is usually imported from abroad using a dirty heavy oil burning ship and then the CO2 it absorbed over a number of years is released into the atmosphere in seconds."

      Nevertheless wood chip is a closed cycle. Drax is now, I believe, entirely wood chip and it's big. As you say, it's the transport that's the killer.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Maths

    Nissan Micra from £14215

    Nissan Leaf from £26845

    Difference: £12630.

    £6000 incentive?

    1. Wellyboot Silver badge

      Re: Maths

      Break even, just in time for the batteries to be shot?

  20. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Angel

    There are so many problems with this idea

    Where do we start?

    Fortunately The above commentards seem to have covered just about all of them. Maybe we should be the ones running the government.

  21. cd
    Meh

    Try looking at this from the other end, given that we're talking about pointlessly cheap and greedy people who lack any compassion being in power, people who spend more energy making up manipulative lies to save themselves pennies than actually fixing any issues.

    The main point of this scheme is that the poor who pay taxes can chip in to help wealthy people buy a new electric car. And of course keep their friends who own dealerships busy.

    1. Grease Monkey

      That is a given for any Tory policy.

      It's not just the have-nots subsidizing the haves (Dennis Moore? Stupid bitch, etc.) but so many of their policies are aimed at driving money from the ordinary person into the pockets of rich (Tory) business owners and share holders.

      Just like Trump the Tories real idea of "the economy" is actually the strength of the stock market.

      The saddest thing though is that some many "working class" (is there such a thing any more?) Tory voters thank them for these policies. This is how populist governments have always worked, by convincing the aspirational poor that they are somehow part of the club and will somehow benefit from the successes or the rich.

  22. IGotOut Silver badge

    Bigger picture...corporate bribes

    Is everyone missing the bribe?

    The only real EV production in the UK is Nissan.

    The same Nissan that recently announced it would leave the UK if Brexit was unfavourable to them?

    Yes, yes, that Nissan

    1. Glen 1 Silver badge

      Re: Bigger picture...corporate bribes

      Brexit is going to be unfavourable to all companies that do a significant part of their business with the EU. Gee who'dve thunkit?

      The word the Nissan bloke used was "unsustainable".

      6K subsidy is a drop in the ocean compared to the problems no-deal would/will cause. It won't stop them going, but they will quite happily take the cash before they go.

  23. Sp0ck

    I saw this reported yesterday and thought it was a great idea as I'm in need of changing my little runabout (a 14 yr old Fiat Punto 1.2). It passed the MOT last year fine albeit with some advisories. Those are going to cost a few hundred quite to put right for this MOT (car is worth £150 tops) so I thought I'll run it till the MOT, see what happens and if it fails replace it.

    I was looking at a used Fiesta (or similar) as a replacement, a decent spec one for around £10-12k so thought that with the extra £6k I might be able to get an EV instead. Hohohohoho, I'd never (properly) looked at the prices of EVs before. The cheapest EVs are a smidge over £20k (with the current £3k government grant), but I don't want the *cheapest* I can get as I've already got that and want something a bit nicer this time around, so that pushes it up to at around £18k (taking the full £6k off) which is £6k over my budget. I priced up a new e-up! and that came in at £18,130 if you take £6k off the full RRP, the Seat Mii and Skoda Citigo electric are £2k and £1k cheaper so still at least £4k over budget.

    Back to another used petrol for me then.

    The only thing I can think that it will benefit will be the companies that provide the charging infrastructure.

    A couple of other things....

    Is this £6k going to replace the current £3k grant or is it a scrappage scheme on top of that (cannot see the gov giving £9k away!).

    If it is a scrappage scheme and replaces the £3k grant it will not be any good for people with a car worth over £6k so they'll have to pay full price, meaning every EV will go up by £3k, so could actually stall EV sales.

    Or.....is it an either / or scheme? If you've a clunker you'll get £6k (in reality a £3k scrappage), if you've a car worth more than £6k to part-ex or no part-ex you'll still get the current £3k grant?

    I would also assume that there will be the *you will have to have owned your clunker for at least 3 (or possibly longer) months* to be eligible for the £6k.

  24. VulcanV5

    Weird echoes?

    "The government's car scrappage scheme has echoes of former Labour PM Gordon Brown's efforts to financially motivate people to buy petrol-powered cars instead of diesel."

    Shomething wrong, shomewheres. . . My memory of the idiot Brown is of his extortionate increase in Road Tax on petrol engined vehicles to compel their owners to buy diesel. I've aince wondered why he's still living in retirement in the UK and not in Germany as a main board director of VAG.

    1. Citizen99

      Re: Weird echoes?

      I concur, you just beat me to the posting, it was the other way around :-)

    2. codejunky Silver badge

      Re: Weird echoes?

      @VulcanV5

      "My memory of the idiot Brown is of his extortionate increase in Road Tax on petrol engined vehicles to compel their owners to buy diesel."

      I have been scrolling to see if anyone was gonna mention this. The incentive to diesel being far worse in the end with the benefit of hindsight. And that is the problem with these dumb schemes where the gov 'picks the winner' because the gov can never be smart enough to pick the right one.

      If the gov wants to inject cash they need to give tax holidays.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Free charging points at supermarkets, hotels, airports etc...

    until everyone has an EV.

    The what do you suppose will happen? Hint: someone has to pay for the (shop/hotels/airport)'s electricity... 2nd hint: look at lower road tax "incentives" to own hybrid or EV vehicles...

  26. Robert D Bank

    Repurposing

    I would prefer the £6k going toward a scheme to re-power existing diesels/petrol to electric. I really don't like the idea of so many serviceable vehicles being crushed when they could be re-powered, saving all the energy etc required to build a new car from scratch. Also, this sort of scheme would allow a lot more small scale operators to set up conversion factories, or local garages to set it up a useful side scheme. Also local electronic companies could start concentrating on building conversion kits and the associated 'smart' electronics to manage them. Other engineering firms could build kit for the KERS systems to be retrofitted. and battery storage kits to replace fuel tanks etc.

    1. Morat

      Re: Repurposing

      Alas, you will run into the same blockage as the scheme for LPG - the SMMT.

      There's no profit in repurposing existing cars, the only solution is to build new ones. Great for the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, not so good for the planet.

  27. Stripes the Dalmatian
    WTF?

    State aid to a foreign power with MY money?

    So, we're giving up on UK standards in food quality, protecting the environment, and animal welfare. Do we have to give the US our money as well as our sovereignty?

  28. Jan 0

    Shopping trips

    A car is very inappropriate for shopping trips, a ~1.5 tonne trolley doesn't make sense for a few kg of shopping. How about a £6000 incentive for anyone who wants to buy an electric cargo bike?

  29. Toni the terrible

    Costs

    The Gov. will never give a discount/cash back that will reduce the cost of any given E-Car to near the cost of its equivalent petrol/diesel. Only the fairly well off will take advantage, which is a typical Gov. ploy to feed the rich/fairly well off and not the less cash endowed.

    Still untill there are lots of 2nd hand E-cars nothing much will change, and will this discount apply to those cars?

    Perhaps if they ban the manufacture or import of petrochemical fueled cars, and not the existing ones?

  30. DrBed
    Trollface

    I was hoping to see Dyson N526 (ventillator is optional). So Tesla it is.

    MAGA, this season: Always look at the bright side of life - better Tesla than Basra.

  31. Morat
    WTF?

    Why subsidise the car industry - there are others more worthy!

    LIke Zoos, Restaurants, Pubs, Hotels

    in fact the whole of the Hospitality industry.

    They need money to refit/re-equip for post-covid life. The car industry is the last place I'd put £6k right now. Who is going to buy a new car and sign a massive monthly payment with the current levels of uncertainty? If you're rich enough, you'll pass because you've got a decent car already. If you're not, you can't afford an EV even with £6k off.

    This is a pointless exercise, how much did the SMMT bung no 10?

  32. BobbyVee

    Where is the electricity going to come from?

    Where is the electricity going to come from, takes years to build new power stations?

    We're often at capacity on cold winter nights, highly likely we will have blackouts.

    Once neighbourhoods start filling up with EVs the infrastructure cabling will need updating to cope with the extra load, likewise the grid.

    I never see plans announced to cope with the extra energy demands once we replace liquid fuels.

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