Electric car grant cut

The Government significantly cut the financial help offered to those looking to buy a new electric car in December 2021, by reducing the plug-in car grant by £1000, from £2,500 to the new current grant of £1,500 (or no more than 35% of the purchase price of the vehicle).

Furthermore, the cost to qualify for the grant has been reduced, from £35,000, to £32,000.

This is a knock for those looking to buy an electric car, as typically entry prices are at a premium compared to conventional petrol or diesel cars, so incentives, or a reduction in outlay certainly helps car buyers to make the switch to electric.

It’s also a blow to car brands, many of whom have (or had) some of their most popular and accessible cars priced at just under £35k, in order for buyers to benefit.

Trudy Harrison, the transport minister, said the reason was to “refocus on the more affordable vehicles”, as richer demographics have typically been buying electric cars and benefiting from the associated grants.

However, the Government has always been open about the fact that the Plug-in Car Grant is a finite incentive, and with EV sales burgeoning (now accounting for around 10% of all car sales in the UK), there has always been a risk that the fund will run out.

The good news

UK electric car grants Vauxhall Corsa-e

There is still a grant of £1,500 available, and if you drive 12,000 miles or more, driving an electric car will still save you money over the time of ownership (you can read more in our guide ‘Does an electric car save you money?’).

Also, some car brands are now changing their pricing in order to make their electric cars still qualify for UK buyers, such as Vauxhall who have slashed prices in response to the Plug-in Car Grant reduction, by cutting the price of the Vauxhall Corsa-e by £2,000 (the entry-level Corsa-SE, which was previously £27,805 after the original PiCG, now comes in at £25,805. The electric Corsa range now tops out at £29,410 for the Elite). And the Vauxhall Mokka-e was reduced in price by £3,000 and all trims qualify (Mokka-e now starts at £29,365 for the SE model and rises to £30,495 for the Ultimate version).

Vauxhall is the first car manufacturer to announce its cut prices in response to the government’s changes to the plug-in car grant. And we expect more will follow suit, where possible, in order to win over those interested in electric cars, but only on the proviso of a grant to help make them switch.

If you buy a car for under £32,000 and qualify, then you don’t need to do anything in order to get the grant, as the dealer will include the value of the grant as money off. You’re not directly given the grant, as such.

And it’s worth mentioning that there’s no change to the electric vehicle grants available for other types of vehicles under the scheme, such as vans and wheelchair accessible vehicles (wheelchair-accessible EVs have retained the £2,500 grant and £35,000 price cap).

Cars still eligible

5 great electric cars that qualify for the grant Vauxhall Mokka-e

Many, many great electric cars are still eligible for the grant. You can read our guide on ‘5 great electric cars that still qualify for the grant’ for some in-depth information. But for now, some key electric cars that still qualify are the Vauxhall Corsa-e, Peugeot e-208, Renault Zoe, Mini Electric, Nissan Leaf, Vauxhall Mokka-e, MG ZS EV, MG5, and many more.

Home charging scheme changes in 2022

UK electric car grants home charger

The grant to help pay for electric car home charger installation is also changing, but you have until March to still take advantage, so you’ll need to move quickly if you want to save money.

The current Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) offers electric vehicle (EV) owners grants of up to £350 towards the cost of having a home charger installed. Currently, all homeowners with off-street parking who are registered as the owner of an EV (including most plug-in hybrids) are eligible for the grant.

From 31 March 2022, the only people who will qualify for the grant are landlords of rental properties, and those living in leasehold flats.

Landlords will be able to make up to 200 applications for a maximum of £70,000 per year. Each property they apply for must have private parking, and there is no limit to how many chargers can be installed on a single property.

If you’re eligible, you can receive the grant in the form of a discount on your charger installation, as long as it is carried out by an approved EVHS installer. Your installer will check that you meet the criteria for the discount then deal with all the paperwork for you.

The OZEV site has a list of all the companies approved for EVHS installation, so start there if you’re thinking of getting a charger fitted.

The average cost of a home charger is £850. Prices range from £300 for slower 3.6kW chargers to more than £1500 for faster 22kW points.

Find your perfect EV

If you’re looking to switch to an electric car or a hybrid car this year, then use our EV finder tool, which will ask you about the type of car you want, and how many miles you drive, to create a shortlist of the best options, just for you. You can then explore each one, get a quote or book a test drive through us.