UK Electric Car Buyers Get up to Quarter of Purchase Price Returned
The first nine cars to become eligible for eco-friendly car grants are: Mitsubishi iMiEV; smart fortwo electric drive; Peugeot iON; Citroen CZero; Nissan Leaf; Tata Vista EV; Toyota Prius Plug-in; Vauxhall Ampera and Chevrolet Volt.
The UK government has made provision of more than £400 million (about $625 million) to promote the uptake of ultra-low carbon vehicle technologies. This includes approximately £80 million ($125 million) supporting research and development activities; £20 million ($31 million) for the installation of infrastructure; and, subject to review, provision of around £300 million (about $450 million) to support consumer incentives. The first review of the Plug-In Car Grant will take place in 2012.
The United States offers a tax credit. According to the Department of Energy legalese: “The minimum amount of the credit for qualified plug-in electric drive vehicles is $2,500 and the credit tops out at $7,500, depending on the battery capacity. To qualify, vehicles must be newly purchased, have four or more wheels, have a gross vehicle weight rating of less than 14,000 lbs, and draw propulsion using a battery with at least four kilowatt hours that can be recharged from an external source of electricity. The full amount of the credit will be reduced with respect to a manufacturer's vehicles after the manufacturer has sold at least 200,000 vehicles. The credit will then phase out over a year.”
UK Transport Secretary Philip Hammond is a main proponent of the new plan. He could use a success after the recent pre-Christmas debacle at Heathrow Airport, where hundreds of flights were cancelled because of storms and low quantities of de-icing fluid for jets.