The Government has published its official response to the consultation on ending the sale of new petrol, diesel and hybrid cars and vans.

The report outlines the outcome of the consultation, including a summary of the responses received and the Government’s views (see here NFDA’s response to the consultation).

In the section where the Government describes the current range of demand incentives, NFDA’s Electric Vehicle Approved (EVA) accreditation scheme is mentioned. The report states “the Government continues to support this scheme, which helps to raise standards and allows drivers to easily find retailers that lead the way in electric vehicle customer service, both in retail and after-sales care”.

Further details about the overall strategy will be announced later in the year when the Government, “working closely with stakeholders”, will publish a delivery plan setting out main milestones towards the phase out dates and committed spending and regulatory measures.

The report covers a number of areas:

  • The phase out date

This section covers views on bringing forward the phase out date for the sale of new petrol, diesel and hybrid cars and vans from 2040 to 2035.

In its response, the Government recognised there remain “several challenges to address”, but also stressed that “transitioning the new car and van market to ZEVs is vital if we are to meet our statutory commitment to net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and end our contribution to climate change”.

As a result, the Government confirmed the previously announced “two-phased approach”: step 1 will see the phase out date for the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans brought forward to 2030; step 2 will see all new cars and vans be fully zero emission at the tailpipe from 2035.

  • The definition of what should be phased out, with a focus on the different types of hybrid vehicles

The Government highlighted hybrid vehicles, of all variants, “can be an important technology in reducing emissions from road transport” and “the environmental benefits of these vehicles depend on their use and zero emission capability among other factors”. The report continues, “They (hybrids) are among the cleanest vehicles on the market today and will contribute to our interim carbon reduction targets in the coming years. PHEVs, in particular, contribute to changing consumer behaviour in the way they fuel their vehicles and increase confidence in battery technology if regularly plugged in”. In its response, the Government also recognises “the automotive industry is investing billions into new technology over the coming years to achieve this aim”.

Stating “transitionary technologies have an important role” over the coming years, the Government reiterated that from 2030 to 2035, technologies that emit from the tailpipe can be sold, if they if they have “significant zero emission capability”, which would include some plug-in and full hybrids.

“The significant zero emission capability requirement will be defined following consultation later this year, to ensure it aids the transition to fully zero emission vehicles and contributes to environmental targets”.

NFDA will respond to the consultation and continue to engage with the Government on the issue.

  • Impact and society and industry, and barriers to achieving the proposals

The consultation encouraged respondents to consider barriers to the phase out date, as well as the impacts on different sections of society and industry. A wide range of issues were raised and, in this section, the Government discusses the impact on: manufacturing and vehicle supply, battery and raw material supply, infrastructure (where it acknowledges that despite the investments, “there is more to do and we do not underestimate the scale of the challenge”), the electricity system and capacity, as well as costs to consumers.

  • What measures are required by Government and others to achieve the earlier phase out date

The “overwhelming majority of respondents” were “united in the need for a supporting package of measures to accompany bringing forward the phase out date from 2040”. In this section the Government covers vehicle incentives, infrastructure, supply side measures and regulations.

Where the Government outlines “demand incentives and other measures”, NFDA’s EVA accreditation scheme is mentioned.

“In 2018, the National Franchised Dealer Association (NFDA) worked with the Energy Saving Trust (EST) and developed a set of standards that dealerships, selling new or used cars, will have to meet to receive accreditation. The accreditation scheme known as Electric Vehicle Approved or EVA was launched on 15 May 2019 following a short pilot. Government continues to support this scheme, which helps to raise standards and allows drivers to easily find retailers that lead the way in electric vehicle customer service, both in retail and after-sales care”.

To represent dealers’ views, NFDA will be liaising with the Government as they continue to engage with stakeholders to implement their strategy.

 

Please find here full details of the Government’s response.