The government has announced changes to the Plug-In Car Grant funding, reducing it by £1,000 and removing the eligibility for plug-in hybrid vehicles with a range of less than 70 electric miles.
From 9 November, the grant rate for alll electric vehicles will move from £4,500 to £3,500. Category 2 and 3 vehicles meanwhile will no longer be eligible for the grant. This means there are now only nineteen models that qualify for the grant.
The PICG was first introduced in 2011, designed to help stimulate the early market for ultra-low emission vehicles, which the government says it has done by supporting the purchase of 160,000 electric or hybrids.
The government states that with plug-in hybrid models becoming so popular among consumers, it is focusing its attention to zero emission models. The government also states the reductions in the price of electric vehicles as a reason for lowering the grant.
Commenting on the changes, Rob Lindley, Managing Director at Mitsubishi Motors UK, who produce the UK's best selling Outlander PHEV, commented: “The decision to suddenly end grant support for some of the greenest vehicles on the road is extremely disappointing but as segment leader for the past four years, we are confident despite the setback that people will still see the benefits of having a 220hp, all-wheel drive SUV that is also so efficient it attracts low VED, low Benefit in Kind rates for business users and offer huge real-world fuel cost savings compared to conventional petrol- and diesel-powered SUVs.”