The Irish government has announced the re-launch of the electric vehicle taxi scheme. Transport Minister Eamon Ryan announced the re-opening of the scheme, with €15 million allocated by the Department of Transport in 2022 and grants available to enable owners of small public service vehicles (SPSV), such as taxis and hackneys, to buy electric vehicles (EVs).
SPSV drivers can apply for grants of up to €10,000 towards the purchase of a new, full-battery eSPSV, with a further €2,500 available to convert it to a wheelchair-accessible model.
Taxi drivers are eligible for double the normal grant when they scrap an older, more polluting or high mileage vehicle and make the switch to electric. By scrapping and switching, €20,000 will be available for a new, fully electric SPSV and if the taxi is a wheelchair-accessible electric vehicle, the supports rise to €25,000.
SPSV drivers who make the switch to an EV can also avail of VRT relief (up to €5,000), the Domestic Charger Scheme (up to €600) and annual toll refunds (up to €1,000). This is in addition to the significant fuel savings and lower maintenance costs associated with electric models.
Almost 600 drivers successfully applied for grants last year, with over €11 million paid out as well as €4 million in provisional grant offers (PGOs).
“The electrification of the taxi fleet has been earmarked by the Department of Transport as an important component in the transition to cleaner fuels, contributing to the achievement of our national targets under the Climate Action Plan 2021 for the reduction of greenhouse-gas emissions in the transport sector,” said Transport Minister Eamon Ryan.
“More and more professional taxi drivers are voting with their wallets and making the move to EVs as an efficient, sustainable and remarkably cost-effective alternative to expensive petrol and diesel.”
In addition to the eSPSV scheme, the Department of Transport continues to invest in the installation of SPSV-dedicated charge points across Ireland. These are already in place at both Dublin and Cork airports and at a number of key stations on the rail network, including Dublin Heuston, Cork (Kent) and Limerick (Colbert). More will be added in the course of 2022.
The Electric SPSV (eSPSV) Scheme is funded by the Department of Transport and administered by the National Transport Authority. For further information on the grant and how to apply, visit www.nationaltransport.ie.