The sale of new diesel and petrol vans in the UK will end by 2030, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said.
The widely anticipated move sees the date brought forward by 10 years from the government’s initial target of 2040, and follows proposals outlined earlier this year to move the date to 2035.
At that time hybrid vehicle sales were to end alongside petrol and diesel vehicles, but the government now says that the sale of hybrids ‘that can drive a significant distance with no carbon coming out of the tailpipe’ can continue until 2035.
The announcement of the ban, which also includes cars, comes with the announcement of £1.3 billion of funding for the rollout of EV chargers, £582 million in grants for those buying zero or ultra-low emission vehicles, and nearly £500 million for the development and mass-scale production of electric vehicle batteries.
In a statement reacting to the announcement, leasing and rental industry body the BVRLA said that it welcomed the government’s decision to take a phased approach.
It said: “All [BVRLA members] are committed to decarbonising, but some face a much harder challenge than others. Many fleet operators are unable to source appropriate EVs for their needs while others have a business model that struggles to absorb the additional cost and charging constraints of running EVs.
“The 2035 extension for plug-in and full hybrids provides an essential lifeline for those facing a greater zero-emission challenge. Vehicle rental companies and van fleet operators will be very relieved to have this additional breathing space but will need clarity on exactly what types of hybrid are in scope.”
Giving his reaction, Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders chief executive Mike Hawes said: “We share the government’s ambition for leadership in decarbonising road transport and are committed to the journey. Manufacturers have invested billions to deliver vehicles that are already helping thousands of drivers switch to zero, but this new deadline, fast-tracked by a decade, sets an immense challenge.
"We are pleased, therefore, to see the government accept the importance of hybrid transition technologies – which drivers are already embracing as they deliver carbon savings now – and commit to additional spending on purchase incentives.”