The UK government’s Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV) offers various grants, incentives and discount schemes to help individuals and businesses buy electric vehicles (EVs) and to install charging points.
Government incentives to help make owning an electric vehicle (EV) more affordable include:
The EVHS grant offers up to a 75% contribution towards the cost of buying and installing a chargepoint at home.
The amount of support is capped at £350 (including VAT) per installation. If you have two EVs, you can apply for grants for two charge points.
To qualify for the EVHS grant you must:
To get the grant, first you choose an authorised EVHS installer from the scheme’s approved list.
The installer will check that you qualify for the grant, apply for it and bill you for the cost of installation, minus the amount of the grant. The installer will then be paid the grant by OZEV.
New-build homes and developments could soon be required to have an EV charging point fitted as standard. The government has consulted on these proposals and results are yet to be published.
This scheme helps make a low-carbon commute that much more convenient. It provides registered businesses, charities, public sector organisations and public authorities with discount vouchers towards the cost of purchasing and installing EV charge points.
The financial support covers 75% of the cost of a chargepoint and its installation, capped at a limit of £350 per socket. Applicants can apply for a maximum of 40 sockets per company.
To apply, workplaces must:
The scheme works like this:
It’s always wise to arrange for an authorised installer to visit your site before applying for the WCS grant. They can check that the premises are able to support the electrical capacity needed for the number of sockets you want to install. An OZEV-approved installer can also help advise on which charge points are compatible with your fleet EVs.
The Energy Saving Trust can also help you choose the best EV charging infrastructure for your business.
Charge points can’t be installed at properties such as flats or terraced houses which have no allocated off-street parking. In these cases, EV owners need to plug in at on-street residential charge points.
The ORCS provides funds to local authorities for the cost of installing these charging points on residential streets or in local-authority-owned car parks.
Local authorities aren’t obligated to provide charge points, though – and a parliamentary research briefing published in May 2021 showed that uptake for grants has been lower than anticipated, with only 68% of the total budget used.
Rules for the latest financial year (2021/22) have been changed in a bid to encourage more applications. For example, the maximum amount OZEV will fund for a chargepoint has been increased to £13,000 in cases where electrical connection costs are high. Plus there are now no maximum or minimum size limitations placed on project applications.
The scheme is administered for OZEV by The Energy Saving Trust and local authorities are encouraged to get in touch with them for independent advice on the application process.
The government has a pot of £20 million to fund charging points in the financial year 2021/2022 so, if you’re keen to see charge points near you, get in touch with your local authority or town and parish council to request that they look in to applying for funding.
EVs are more expensive to buy than their petrol or diesel engine equivalent.
So, to make EV ownership more affordable, the government gives grants to vehicle dealerships and manufacturers to discount the price of brand new low and zero-emission vehicles.
You don’t need to apply for the grant - the saving is passed directly to you from the dealership. So the price you see on the forecourt is the price you pay.
The amount of grant depends on the type of vehicle it is, as the table below indicates.
For example, a car with a recommended retail price (RRP) of up to £35,000, with CO2 emissions of less than 50g/km that can travel for at least 70 miles (112km) without any emissions qualifies for a grant of 35% off, up to a maximum discount of £2,500.
|Category||CO2 emissions||Zero emission range||Grant||Maximum amount|
|Car (worth up to £35,000)||Less than 50 g/km||112 km (70 miles)||35%||Up to £2,500|
|Motorcycle||No CO2||50 km (31 miles)||20%||Up to £1,500|
|Moped||No CO2||30 km (19 miles)||20%||Up to £1,500|
|Van (up to 2,500kg)||Less than 50 g/km||96 km (60 miles)||35%||Up to £3,000|
|Van (2,500kg to 3,500kg)||Less than 50 g/km||96 km (60 miles)||35%||Up to £6,000|
|Trucks (up to 12,000kg)||Less than 50% of equivalent Euro VI||96 km (60 miles)||20%||Up to £16,000 (first 250, 10 per customer) Up to £6,000|
|Taxis||Less than 50 g/km||112 km (70 miles)||20%||Up to £7,500|
Find out which makes and models of EVs qualify for a plug-in grant at the Department for Transport Government website.
Transport Scotland offers interest-free loans to help people living in Scotland pay for the cost of a new EV. Repayments can be made over six years. It currently offers loans of:
In September 2020, the scheme was extended to give financial support towards buying used EVs. The Used Electric Vehicle Loan has a repayment term of five years and offers:
For a list of EV makes and models eligible for the loan, visit The Energy Saving Trust, which manages the scheme on behalf of the Scottish Government.
Other financial incentives you get when buying an electric vehicle include: