A new £2.5 million fund will give Scottish motorists access to an interest-free loan of up to £50,000 for electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles.
The Electric Vehicle Loan is open to anyone looking to buy a new electric or plug-in hybrid car or van, and is offered in addition to the UK Government’s Plug-in Vehicle Grant.
Now open for applications, the loan from the Energy Saving Trust, funded by Transport Scotland, can cover 100% of the purchase price and can be repaid over a period of up to six years.
“Encouraging mass changeover to electric vehicles, from more polluting ones running on petrol or diesel, is a key to cleaner road transport in Scotland and a fundamental factor in achieving our ambitious climate change targets while also improving local air quality,” Transport Minister Derek Mackay said.
“Electric vehicles already offer large savings to drivers through reduced fuel and taxation costs, and this fund will further encourage new buyers by addressing the current cost premium often cited as a barrier to making the switch.”
Harry Mayers, Head of New Services at the Energy Saving Trust, added: “Electric cars cost around 3p per mile to run, compared with around 15p per mile for the average petrol car, and incur no road tax. They also help to reduce local air and noise pollution.”
In addition to the Electric Vehicle Loan, full grant funding is currently available through the ChargePlace Scotland programme for electric car drivers to install a charge point in their home. The vast majority of public ChargePlace Scotland charge points are also free to use.
The existing UK Government Plug-In Car and Van Grant scheme offers grants of up to £5,000 for those buying a new electric car and £8,000 for a van (discounted at purchase point).
Businesses can also apply for an interest-free loan, of up to £100,000 for electric vehicles. All applications to the fund close on 31 March 2016. For more information, visit www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/EVloan.