Owning an electric vehicle should be an ‘option for all’ with interest free loans offered to those on low or middle incomes to be able to buy new and used EVs.
Shadow business secretary Ed Milliband will today call for an electric vehicle ‘revolution’ to give the car industry a boost and create jobs.
Labour wants to see three new gigafactories created by 2025 to create jobs and shore up Britain’s position as a ‘global leader in the electric vehicle market’.
In a speech in London later today, Milliband will say interest-free loans should be offered for new and used electric vehicles to those on low to middle incomes to remove the upfront cost barrier.
Labour will also call for on-street charging to be rolled out quicker in areas such as Yorkshire, the North West and the West Midlands.
Miliband will say: ‘To back the car industry and create jobs, Labour would bring forward ambitious proposals to spark an electric vehicle revolution in every part of the country.
‘By extending the option to buy an electric car to those on lower incomes and accelerating the rollout of charging points in regions that have been left out, we would ensure that everyone could benefit, rather than bake in unfairness.’
Last week the government changed the Plug-In Car Grant, dropping its contribution from £3k to £2.5k.
It also reduced the maximum price of cars eligible for the scheme from £50k to £35k, excluding popular EVs like the Tesla Model 3.
The government will also ban the sale of combustion engined cars from 2030.
Milliband will add: ‘While it’s right that the government has said the sale of new petrol and diesel cars will end, it’s wrong it is imposing a massive transition on our manufacturers from Whitehall then washing its hands of it.
‘It’s not fair, it will damage our manufacturers, and it will mean losing out on the chance to be the world-leader in the electric vehicle market.
‘Labour would back our manufacturers and the communities with proud histories in the industry, but the government is asleep at the wheel.’
Constructing gigafactories is crucial for the future of the automotive sector, especially in light of the trade deal with the EU, believes Labour.
A government spokesman said: ‘We’re investing up to £2.8bn in driving the switch to electric vehicles, working with industry to support the installation of thousands of charge points, and boosting the development of new technologies through the Automotive Transformation Fund.
‘Last year, SMMT stats show more than one in 10 cars sold in the UK had a plug, showing that the electric vehicle revolution is already happening up and down the country.’
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