Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive responded to today’s Autumn Budget:
The Autumn Budget contains some positive measures and we are pleased to see a renewed commitment to new and future vehicle technology. The investment in charge points and new incentives to encourage the take up of electric cars is a positive step to boost buyer confidence, which will be essential to increasing market share. However it’s disappointing that there is no additional funding for the incentivisation of plug-in hybrids.
Research and Development
UK Automotive has established itself as one of the biggest investors in research and development so the announcement of further fresh incentives along with an increase in R&D tax credit will give an additional boost to innovation.
Our greatest concern is the continuing mixed messages around diesel which will only deter and confuse the public further. Diesel buyers will not face any additional taxation for the next six months, but thereafter, will face additional charges which will undermine fleet renewal efforts, which are the best and quickest way to address air quality concerns. Manufacturers are investing heavily in the latest low emission technology, however, it’s unrealistic to think that we can fast-track the introduction of the next generation of clean diesel technology which takes years to develop, in just four months. This budget will also do nothing to remove the oldest, most polluting vehicles from our roads in the coming years.