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In spite of all the hoo-hah, only 1000 electric vans were sold in the UK last year. Now a group of concerned organisations has come up with recommendations to improve on this

THE take-up of electric vans in the UK so far has been, shall we say, less than spectacular.

Despite the Government piling hundreds of millions of pounds into schemes trying to persuade us all to drive electric vehicles, just over 1000 electric vans have been sold this year in a market of 227,000 LCVs in general.

Now several well-known fleet organisations have put their heads together and come up with a few suggestions for the Government as to how to make these vehicles more appealing to the buying public.

A workshop comprising of the Energy Saving Trust, the Association of Car Fleet Operators and a range of British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association members gave advice to the Government’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV).

OLEV has a £500m budget earmarked for growing the ultra-low emission vehicle market up to 2020, and is looking to get feedback from across the automotive sector about how to spend it.

The workshop gave OLEV a mini-manifesto of policy suggestions that could together provide the sort of incentive package that has helped drive such a successful ultra-low emission vehicle market in Norway. These included:

  • Providing subsidised or free EV parking;
  • Giving tax incentives for companies to install charging infrastructure;
  • Introducing an emissions-based AMAPs (Approved Mileage Allowance Payments) regime;
  • Ensuring that benefit-in-kind company car tax is charged on the Plug-in Car Grant-inclusive cost of a vehicle, rather than the higher list price;
  • Re-instating 100% first-year allowances for leased or rented ultra-low emission vehicles.

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