Reports suggesting UK transport secretary Grant Shapps is once again considering changing MOT frequencies to two-yearly intervals began being published on the evening of 26 April 2022. On the morning 27 April, Shapps was refusing to rule out those changes. Whenever the transport secretary came up with the plans they are old news which has been repeatedly debated, consulted on and ultimately rejected. Such proposals are also “ill-advised” according to the National Tyre Distributors Association, whose chief executive Stefan Hays blasted Shapps’ alleged MOT proposal in a statement released at noon on 27 April.
The Government has announced a number of changes to the Plug-in Car Grant (PICG), the Plug-in Van Grant (PIVG) and the Plug in Motorcycle Grant (PIMG) rates and eligibility criteria. The new terms apply from 07:00 on Wednesday 15 December 2021. The Government has temporarily suspended the grant portal as we transition to the new rates.
The Department for Transport (DfT) has launched a consultation on proposals to set up a Road Collision Investigation Branch (RCIB), which would operate much like the similar independent bodies that already exist for air, maritime and rail accidents. The consultation, which has been published on gov.uk, will run until 9 December.
The vice chairman of Giti Group, Cherie Nursalim, has become the Indonesian government’s special advisor on climate. In addition to her leadership role at Giti Tire, Nuralim is also the vice chairman of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), and board member of Publicis Groupe in France, IMAGINE Collective with Paul Polman, and Partnering for Green Growth (P4G).
The Petrol Retailers Association (PRA) has reacted with a mixture of horror and dismay to the suggestion that road pricing could be introduced to cover the loss of revenue from fuel taxation when petrol and diesel cars are phased out. PRA chairman Brian Madderson said: “We are deeply concerned about the government’s potential road pricing proposals. It is unfathomable that the government would introduce a measure that would only succeed in discriminating against the poorest in society.
The UK will end the sale of new petrol and diesel cars and vans by 2030, a decade earlier than planned. UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson set out the plans as part of a wider 10 point plan for a so-called for a “green industrial revolution”. However, the sale of hybrid cars and vans that can drive “a significant distance with no carbon coming out of the tailpipe” will remain until 2035.
The UK is taking steps forward in automated technology in vehicles with the launch of a call for evidence on 18 August 2020 to help shape how innovative new systems could be used in future on GB roads. The call for evidence will look at the Automated Lane Keeping System (ALKS) – an automated system that can take over control of the vehicle at low speeds, keeping it in lane on motorways.
Ending the sale of new petrol, diesel, and hybrid cars and vans by 2035 or earlier would not only be unfeasible but seriously economically damaging, particularly at a time when the economy is struggling to recover from the Coronavirus lockdown. The original date of 2040 is already a very tough ask”, said Brian Madderson, chairman of the Petrol Retailers Association (PRA).
The Committee on Climate Change has advised the government to bring forward its ban on petrol and diesel vehicles to 2032. The government is working to a provisional date of 2035 to ban the sale of all vehicles that aren’t zero-emission, but the committee’s progress report is now suggesting that target is too late. However, the BVRLA is not sure if that is a realistic target.
Following the news that new European tyre labels come into force on 1 May 2021, the UK government embarked on an “Improving new vehicle safety and environmental compliance plus passenger vehicle digital radio requirement” consultation on 1 June 2020.
A car scrappage scheme to boost UK vehicle sales was reported to be unlikely this week, quelling hopes of a subsidised shift towards electric cars. However, according to Calum MacRae, automotive analyst at data and analytics company GlobalData, such a move would benefit the country’s economy. “Just a few days ago, it seemed that a £6,000 new car purchase incentive scheme was close to being signed-off, but it looks like the Treasury is now considering a wider-ranging fiscal stimulus package that will forego specific incentives for the automotive sector.
France recently announced plans to inject more than €8bn into its automotive sector, a measure that Calum MacRae, automotive analyst at GlobalData, believes should be considered across Western Europe. The analyst has forecast that the region will “bear the brunt of a global industry that faces a near 20 per cent fall in volume in 2020 due to the impact of COVID-19.” While it forecasts global industry to lose “nearly 16 million sales in 2020 compared with 2019, West Europe alone will account for more than a quarter of the decline.”
The government’s decision to include car showrooms in its first wave of of retail reopenings on 1 June has been welcomed by dealers. Sue Robinson, director of the National Franchised Dealers Association stated: “Following our lobbying efforts where we highlighted it was vital to include dealerships in the first wave of non-essential retail reopening, it is positive that the Prime Minister has confirmed the Government intends to reopen car showrooms from 1 June.
The government has temporarily suspended the wrongful trading rules to ease the pressure on businesses. What do you need to know? Ordinarily, directors may become personally liable for a company’s debts if they allow the business to continue trading in the knowledge that it is unable to meet its debts and liabilities. This is called wrongful trading. However, the coronavirus outbreak has caused unexpected cash flow problems for many.
“We welcome the Chancellor’s update and extension to the furlough scheme, which will allow businesses to bring staff back to work on a part-time basis.” said Stuart James, chief executive of the Independent Garage Association (IGA). The IGA wrote to Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak on 29 April, requesting a partial furlough scheme that would allow employees to return to work part-time to support businesses throughout their reopening.