No Deal Brexit Threatens Electric Car Market Boom

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Increased tariffs from EU vehicle imports to the UK in the event of a no deal Brexit threatens to end the progress of the country’s transition to electric cars, according to new calculations from the SMMT (Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders).

Two thirds of EVs (electric vehicles) sold in the UK are from Europe, all of which will be subject to a price increase of £2,800 as a result of World Trade Organization (WTO) tariffs of 10%. Essentially this voids the government’s £3,000 plug-in car grant for brand-new zero-emissions currently offered by the government.

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How a no deal Brexit damages industry, punishes car buyers and reduces UK transport decarbonisation

No deal Brexit electric cars

Analysis from the SMMT has shown that the UK Automotive Industry, new car buyers and the country as a whole is negatively affected by a decision to proceed with Brexit without a deal in place. Here are some key findings that their survey found:

  • Increasing costs of EVs risk reducing demand for all-electric models next year by at least 20%.
  • WTO tariffs would add at least £4.5 billion to annual costs of fully-assembled vehicles traded between the UK and EU.
  • Extra charges would add around £2,000 extra onto the UK-built electric cars exported to EU countries, making our EVs less of an attractive investment and impeding the chances of us becoming a global leader in producing emissions-free vehicles.

SMMT Chief Executive, Mike Hawes, said:

“Just as the automotive industry is accelerating the introduction of the latest electrified vehicles, it faces the double whammy of a coronavirus second wave and the possibility of leaving the EU without a deal. As these figures show, ‘no deal’ tariffs will put the brakes on the UK’s green recovery, hampering progress towards net zero and threatening the future of the UK industry.

“To secure a truly sustainable future, we need our government to underpin industry’s investment in electric vehicle technology by pursuing an ambitious trade deal that is free from tariffs, recognises the importance of batteries in future vehicle production and ensures consumers have choice in accessing the latest zero emission models. We urge all parties to re-engage in talks and reach agreement without delay.”

Should I be considering an electric car now?

No deal Brexit electric cars

Time’s ticking for a deal to be agreed between the UK and the EU. The Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the EU both agree that a deal must happen in October, otherwise it’s unlikely that there’ll be enough time to finalise an agreement before the Brexit transition deadline of 31 December 2020.

As it currently stands, you can still benefit from the government’s plug-in electric car grant towards your EV, if you plan to buy it. If you don’t want to own one, there’s still manufacturer discounts available on lease deals for electric models that could see you save money on upfront costs and depreciation.

These prices are guaranteed to change overnight if a no deal Brexit were to happen. So, if you’re in a position where you’re ready to get a new car and are set on an electric vehicle, you’ll no doubt get a better deal while we’re still trading freely with the EU than if you were to wait until no deal is confirmed.

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