Van manufacturer calls for more government aid

As the push for greener vehicles envelops the commercial vehicle industry, one van manufacturer is concerned that the present government may not be doing enough to encourage the sale of electric vans.

Iveco, the bus and coach manufacturer, have called on the Coalition Government to do all it can to provide greater help and encouragement in the way of financial incentives to fleet companies in the UK. They say without financial assistance many companies may shy away from the greener, electric vans as the technology is still expensive to purchase, even without the commercial vehicle insurance that must be purchased also.

Iveco’s Product Director, Martin Flach, suggested that the UK adapts a similar approach to some EU countries where a payload allowance of 300 kg is given to owners to offset the heavier weights of the electric vans due to their batteries. He went on to warn that unless governments had clear, well thought out strategies to encourage their use, they would never achieve large numbers of sales.

A spokesman from the Government run Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) said “Most vans are sold to business users, so benefits through the tax system may be a more appropriate way to support this market. These are in place already and include exemption from Van Benefit Charge, Enhanced Capital Allowances and no VED.”

Iveco, a Fiat company, have just launched an electric version of their popular Iveco Daily van and are keen to promote its capabilities.

Already the present government is considering whether to implement the £5,000 grant for private buyers of electric vehicles announced by the previous government and due to come into force next year.

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