The UK government has announced an investment of an additional £4 million ($4.9 million) to the Plug-In Van grant scheme, extending eligibility to larger electric vehicles. Electric trucks above 3.5 tons will now be eligible for grants of up to £20,000 ($24,300).
The grant amount is automatically deducted from the price of the vehicle by the dealer at purchase, and the dealership completes the necessary paperwork. The scheme will be reviewed in March 2018, or after 5,000 grants have been processed.
The UK’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles pointed out that electric vans and trucks have particular air quality benefits, as they spend much of their time in city centers, and more than 96% of them are diesel-powered. Also, the proportion of vans in the UK transport fleet is increasing: new van sales are up 66% between 2010 and 2015, compared with a 30% increase for cars.
“The electric car revolution is well underway with consumers, and this funding will encourage more businesses to consider switching to cleaner vans and trucks,” said Business and Energy Secretary Greg Clark. “Our automotive sector is thriving, with the world’s most popular electric car already made in the UK, and we are forging ahead to deploy new engine technology to make low-carbon vehicles mainstream.”
Image via Nicolas Raymond