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A third of dealers believe 50% of cars will be ULEV by 2030

19 November 2019


A new survey of UK car dealers by Close Brothers Motor Finance has found that a third (34%) believe that half of cars will be ultra-low emission by 2030, meaning the Government’s ‘Road to Zero’ strategy will be successful. A quarter (25%) aren’t sure, whilst 41% believe the 2030 deadline won’t be hit. 

The finding comes amid a raft of positive news in 2019 surrounding alternative fuel vehicles, with sales doubling in the past year and one in every 10 cars sold in Britain in October being either an electric or hybrid vehicle.

But almost all (97%) dealers feel more action is needed to meet the ambitions set out in the ‘Road to Zero’ strategy. Among the top priorities, 80% would like to see better range and recharge time of electric vehicles, while the same proportion think consumers would need to see a reduction in the cost of the ultra-low emission cars. 

While improvements in the cars and increased investment in infrastructure were seen as the most needed improvements, just 35% felt that higher taxes on fossil-fuelled cars are the answer to increasing low-emission cars.

Proportion of dealers who believe this factor is needed to change to significantly increase sales of ultra-low emission vehicles

DSS Results Table

Commenting on the findings, Sean Kemple, Director of Sales at Close Brothers Motor Finance said: “AFVs - and electric vehicles in particular – have gone from being a sliver of the total market share to a significant proportion in a very short space of time. EV now make up 8% of total car sales, up from just 2% in 2015. The consensus is that the tipping point has been reached, and 2019 will be remembered as the year AFVs went mainstream. The fact that this was achieved in against a background of economic uncertainty and continued confusion among consumers around fuel type is more impressive and significant. However, in order to continue this momentum, we mustn’t take our foot off the pedal.

“But despite the overwhelming media buzz surrounding alternative fuel vehicles, with a good number of positive announcements throughout the year, we mustn’t get carried away. Against a backdrop of positive news, it would be easy to think that the hard work is done, but the message coming from dealers- particularly independent dealers - is that we still have a long way to go to if we are to meet the government’s targets. The next government must take this issue seriously and continue to make investment in electric vehicle infrastructure a priority.”

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