Grants Cut For Electric Vehicles

02 Apr 2021 | 12.54 pm

Grants Cut For Electric Vehicles

PHEV subsidy reduced by €2,500

02 Apr 2021 | 12.54 pm

Anyone who can afford to pay more than €60,000 for a car and who decides to go electric will no longer get a grant of €5,000 towards their purchase unless they buy before July 1.

The Sustainable Energy Authority Ireland has modified its electric vehicles grant scheme in several ways, with the grant for Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV) being cut by half to €2,500, while the grant for fully electric vehicles will stay at €5,000.

The latter update, says the SEAI, is in line with the wider policy approach being taken by other EU states “due to the increasing recognition that PHEV emissions in the real world are often higher than ‘official’ emission levels”.

The price cap of €60,000 for both PHEVs and EVs is to “ensure that funding is targeted most effectively at those who might not otherwise buy an electric vehicle”, and where the availability of a grant is most likely to effect a decision to buy an EV.

Sales of new electric vehicles in January and February reached almost 2,900 vehicles, up two=-thirds on a year ago.  

However electric cars still make up only a small proportion of total sales at less than 6%. The government’s target is to have  one million electric vehicles on the roads by 2030.

Electric cars are more expensive to buy than petrol or diesel models, but running costs are substantially lower, along with servicing costs and road tax.

There’s also a cut of €5,000 in VRT for EVs (€2,500 for PHEVs) which will continue, plus a grant of up to €600 to install a home charger and benefit-in-kind tax relief for full EV purchases.

According to Jason Powell of the school of engineering at University of Limerick, the cost of running an EV over five years can be almost 50% less than the cost of the diesel equivalent.

Powell took two almost equivalents, the VW Golf Style and the VW ID.3 Life with similar price tags and assumed annual driving of 16,000 kilometres. Choosing the most fuel efficient Golf variant and assuming the Life is largely charged at home on night rate electricity, he calculated the five-year cost of the Golf at €11,550 and that of the Life at €5,912, a saving of more than €1,000 per year.

The full details are here, together with a discussion of factors likely to influence the costs of each in the future, pretty much all of which will increase the cost savings from owning an electric car.

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