An electric car plugged into an EV charging point (John Walton:PA)An electric car plugged into an EV charging point (John Walton:PA)


Back auto industry and help unleash £50bn of green growth, SMMT urges next government

  • UK auto sector can fuel £50bn of green growth over next decade with right conditions in place, says SMMT
  • Smart policies and consumer incentives would help 17m drivers switch to zero-emission motoring by 2035
  • That would halve the number of fossil fuel cars in use
  • Light vehicle manufacturing could deliver more than a million EVs a year by 2035
  • SMMT launches Vision 2035: Ready to Grow today

Time 9:45 am, June 25, 2024

Britain’s next government is being urged to work hand in hand with the automotive industry to deliver growth worth an estimated £50bn over the next 10 years.

The SMMT – which is publishing its Vision 2035: Ready to Grow today at its International Automotive Summit – said doing so would help millions more drivers switch to zero-emission motoring.

Its fresh research says that targeted policies would see the value of the new car market grow from just over £70bn a year today to nearly £80bn every year over the next decade.

That would see more than 17m fossil-fuel cars replaced by zero-emission vehicles by the end of 2035.

More than a million EV cars and vans could also be rolling off production lines every year, increasing the sector’s value by 5% over the current outlook, it added.

Vision 2035 builds on the SMMT’s Manifesto 2030, which was published last year, and is a cross-party plan by the trade body aimed at strengthening the market, bolstering Britain’s trade and improving the workforce.

The plan would also see low-cost and low-carbon electricity, says the SMMT, as well as bring in an industrial transformation strategy that will transition the UK to a net zero future – with the automotive sector providing green economic growth.

The SMMT said market modelling had revealed that even halving VAT on new EV purchases for just the next three years would see an extra 300,000 new zero-emission car registrations on top of its current outlook, meaning 2.3m new zero-emission cars on the road in total during that time.

That in turn would create a snowball effect for Britain’s net zero transition, dramatically speeding up overall EV car uptake over the next decade to more than 17m and delivering £800bn of revenue, meaning that by 2035, half of all cars in use would be zero-emission.

Such a step, says the SMMT, would see car emissions cumulatively drop by 175 million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

In addition, increasing the UK’s global competitiveness in light vehicle production would see more than nine million zero-emission cars and vans roll out of British factories between now and the end of 2035, said the SMMT, delivering more than £290bn in revenue at factory gate prices – an increase of 5% on the current outlook.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: ‘The UK automotive sector has proved its resilience during recessions and pandemics. Now, it’s ready to grow.

‘With voters preparing to cast their ballots next week, the next government will have the power to unlock the sector’s potential, boosting the economy, creating jobs and cutting carbon.

‘The industry’s vision is of green growth and a fair transition for all. Whoever forms the next government, we urge them to create the conditions that will allow us to deliver on our promise.’

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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