The UK government is now committing an additional £4 million to the Plug-In Van grant scheme extending the eligibility to larger electric vehicles.
Businesses will now benefit from grants up to £20,000 when switching their large trucks to electric vehicles. Specifically, N2 vans (3.5 – 12 tonnes gross weight) and N3 vans (more than 12 tonnes gross weight) are now eligible.
The Plug-In Van grant has been available to small commercial vehicles of up to 3.5 tonnes since 2012, but sales of new electric vans have remained limited.
Electric vans and trucks have significant air quality benefits, as they spend much of their time in towns and city centres and over 96% of them are diesel-powered. The proportion of vans in the domestic transport fleet is increasing: new van sales are up 66% between 2010 and 2015, compared with a 30% increase in cars over the same period.
The Plug-In Van grant amount is automatically deducted from the price of the vehicle by the dealer when it is purchased, and the dealership also completes all the necessary paperwork.
The scheme will be reviewed once 5,000 grants have been processed, or in March 2018, whichever is earlier.
The Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) is a team working across government to support the early market for ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEV). It is providing over £600 million to position the UK at the global forefront of ULEV development, manufacture and use.