Plug-in Car Grant scheme to run out of funds within days

OLEV pledges to extend domestic charge point grant scheme with a further £9 million


The government Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) has announced that it will continue to support the installation of domestic charge points with a new £9 million plug-in car grant scheme.

Transport Minister, Barnoess Kramer, has confirmed that a grant to cover up to 75% of the total cost of having a chargepoint installed at home, will be made available to electric vehicle (EV) drivers from September 1st 2014. This replaces the current 13.5 million grant scheme that was sanctioned in February of last year.

The new revised scheme will provide a maximum of £900, as opposed to £1000 offered under the previous scheme, to consumers installing an EV charge point at home. This reduction is largely due to the mass rollout of charging point technology and equipment over the course of the last year, which has brought down prices.

The current scheme has now allocated the entirety of its £13.5 million budget and expires on 30th June 2014. OLEV highlighted that interim measures, running from 1st July to 31st August, will be in place to bridge the gap between the two schemes. These have been set up to help suppliers deliver on existing orders. OLEV has been explicit in asking suppliers not to take new orders during this period. More details can be found on the OLEV website.

The new set of grants will run from the 1st September 2014 through to the 31st March 2015 or until its £9 million budget has been exhausted.

The announcement reaffirms the government’s commitment to encouraging the uptake of Ultra Low Emission Vehciles (ULEVs) and positioning the UK as world leader in the sector.

Baroness Kramer said: “Uptake of plug-in vehicles is gathering pace and we want to make sure that people thinking about becoming part of this technological revolution have the confidence that they will always have somewhere to charge their car.”

“Our scheme has been tremendously popular and we are keen to continue the roll out of chargepoints to driveways and garages across the country. That is why we are launching a successor scheme today to help make this important technology as commonplace in your home as a plug for your kettle. It will also help create British jobs in the sector, while also cutting driving costs and carbon and improving air quality.”

OLEV has so far channeled almost £1 billion in resources to incentivise the switch to ULEVs. In April 2014, the government revealed immediate plans to implement a £500m support package for ULEVs until 2020. This included a £32 million grant dedicated to publicly available rapid charge points, which will see a rapid charging point installed at every motorway station by the end of 2014. Figures suggest that this approach is paying off with the number of registered EVs steadily rising year on year, now standing at over 10,000.