A new scrappage scheme launched by Transport for London (TfL) to support its expanding Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) has been labelled insufficient by the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA).
Speaking out against the plans, which provide grants of up to £2,000 towards the price of a new car or £5,000 towards the price of a new van, NFDA chief executive Sue Robinson said the total budget allocated for the scrappage scheme will not be sufficient to make an impact the level at which the Mayor is expecting.
The new scrappage scheme was introduced to support Londoners on certain low income or disability benefits, and eligible micro businesses (up to 10 employees), sole traders and charities with a registered address in London. It is supported by a £110m funding package.
Eligible applicants can get up to £2,000 for scrapping a car or up to £1,000 for scrapping a motorcycle. For wheelchair accessible vehicles there is a payment of £5,000 to scrap or retrofit to the ULEZ standard. Van owners can claim between £5,000 and £9,500.
Robinson said: “Whilst the NFDA supports and is encouraged by the London Mayor’s decision to provide a financial incentive towards exchanging ageing and non-compliant vehicles for newer, greener modes of transport, we are severely concerned that this will not be enough and the scheme will continue to have negative implications for a large proportion of motorists.
“By increasing the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone to the entirety of London, it is forcing the residents of London to make a decision before they are ready. During a period of unprecedented financial struggle and in the midst of a cost of living crisis, families of low income may not be ready to make a transition to a newer vehicle even with the scrappage scheme.
“NFDA remains firmly against the decision to extend the ULEZ, or at least the timescale of enforcement is far too soon. Without the availability of government incentives and the commitment for more investment towards EV infrastructure to adequately prepare London for a complete transfer to EV adoption, this restriction to older ICE and diesel vehicles should not be implemented.”
London’s new, expanded ULEZ will operate across all London boroughs up to the existing Low Emission Zone (LEZ) boundary.
According to the Mayor of London, it will save 27,000 tonnes of CO2 in outer London, nearly double that which the central London ULEZ achieved in its first year of operation.
Vehicles must meet strict emission standards to drive in the ULEZ area: Euro 4 for petrol cars and vans; Euro 6 for diesel cars and vans; and Euro 3 for motorcycles and mopeds.
Drivers of older, polluting cars and vans will have to pay £12.50 a day to use their vehicle across inside the zone.
Maxus has launched its own light commercial vehicle (LCV) scrappage scheme to coincide with the TfL scheme.
The LCV manufacturer’s 49 UK retailers will be offering up to £14,000 off its eDeliver 9 electric van as part of a retail offer open from January 27 to August 31, while eDeliver 3, T90EV pick-up and MIFA 9 MPV customers can all benefit from £1,000 off.