Plan for electric car subsidies

The Government has unveiled plans to offer motorists cash incentives of between £2,000 and £5,000 to buy an electric car.

The initiative is part of a £250 million five-year plan to deliver a green motor industry and create an infrastructure to support low-carbon transport, such as electric cars.

Transport Secretary Geoff Hoon said the incentive scheme, which could be available from 2011, will make owning an electric car "a real option for motorists".

It is hoped the incentives will play a major role in cutting carbon emissions, at the same time as promoting and encouraging the manufacture of low-carbon transport.

The money will be introduced to coincide with the mass production of electric and plug-in hybrid cars, and consumers will have access to up to £5,000 to buy a green car to suit their needs.

The Department for Transport is to begin talks with the motor industry and financiers to establish how best to deliver assistance to encourage motorists to swap high CO2 emission cars for a new electric model.

Cars eligible for sale as a green car will have to meet modern safety standards and have a range and top speed sufficient to give mass market appeal.

Copyright © Press Association 2009