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Auto Trader boss calls on government for EV support as figures show you need to be wealthy to want one

Time 6 months ago

Auto Trader director Ian Plummer has called on the government to offer incentives to UK electric car buyers. 

Speaking on Car Dealer Live this week, he commented on how the UK doesn’t have anywhere near the same level of support as other European countries and that’s resulting in the EV price problem consumers still face.

Plummer explained that looking at Auto Trader’s data there is no urban or rural divide, the majority of people searching for EVs are generally older and wealthier.

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He said: ‘You have to be able to afford an EV, and people who want an EV are in higher income brackets. 

‘More than half of them are in the more than £50,000 income brackets. That compares to around 34 per cent for all car buyers.’

This Auto Trader data looked at ‘EV intenders’, which makes up around seven per cent of its total audience and are people spending more than 30 per cent of their time looking at electric cars.

Plummer said: ‘We know that EVs are more expensive to produce, that’s the manufacturer’s challenge that they’re grappling with. 

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‘But if Boris Johnson is preparing himself to make a big announcement on EVs and more rhetoric, I really think we need to see the substance behind the government’s support. 

‘They’ve got it in France where they can get an EV at the same sort of price as an ICE (internal combustion engined vehicle) and we need to see that over here in the UK as well.’

Plummer was speaking on Car Dealer Live which featured a panel featuring head of sales at Jaguar Land Rover, Mark Potter, and Swansway director John Smyth. You can watch the broadcast at the top of this story.

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Rebecca Chaplin's avatar

Rebecca has been a motoring and business journalist since 2014, previously writing and presenting for titles such as the Press Association, Auto Express and Car Buyer. She has worked in many roles for Car Dealer Magazine’s publisher Blackball Media including head of editorial.

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