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General news updateBack

EV3100 organisations to benefit from electric vehicle funding

More than 100 businesses in South Yorkshire are expected to cut fleet and travel costs following the launch of an electric vehicle initiative.

The Inmotion Electric Vehicles Scheme, which is believed to be the first of its type in the country, is a partnership between Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield Council, and South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive.

Its remit is to implement the Department for Transport’s (DfT’s) Local Sustainable Transport Fund programme in the area.

Electric cars and vans are supplied through the scheme via partner contract hire and leasing company Venson Automotive Solutions, while Npower is responsible for programme administration and installing a workplace charging point.

The scheme was established as part of a successful bid for £24.6 million from the DfT’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund. It enables private and voluntary sector businesses and organisations – public sector organisations and sole traders are excluded – to obtain a grant up to £10,500 for a plug-in van or £7,500 for a plug-in car.

There is also a £500 grant towards the approximate £1,000 cost of installing a workplace recharging point. There are currently 16 recharging points across South Yorkshire with plans for a further six.

Under the Government’s own plug-in car and van grant schemes, applicants benefit from maximum cash support of £8,000 per van and £5,000 per car. Inmotion cash increases the subsidy by a further £2,500 per vehicle


Plug-in carsAlmost a third of the UK’s plug-in cars sold in last three months

Sales of electric vehicles are on the rise, with more than 5,000 Government plug-in grants handed out in the last quarter alone.

The plug-in car grant reduces the price of ultra-low emission vehicles (ULEVs) by up to £5,000 for cars and £8,000 for vans, making them more affordable for the public and businesses.

Between July and September 2014, over 5,000 grants were provided, more than double the number than in the previous three months and almost a third of all grants since the scheme was launched in 2010. There are now over 17,000 grant funded ULEVs on the UK’s roads.

Transport Minister Baroness Kramer said: “It is not surprising that people want these vehicles – they are a pleasure to drive and incredibly cheap to run, as well as beneficial to the environment. The government is breaking down barriers that may have put people off in the past.

“This growing confidence helps the UK strengthen its position as a global leader in developing green technology. Expanding this sector is also creating thousands of jobs and contributing to Britain’s thriving £11 billion automotive industry, and encouraging more investment in the UK – a key part of this government’s long-term economic plan.”


Glass'sGlass’s warns of slowdown in the used car market

Glass’s has warned of a slowdown in the used car market with rising volumes of cars reaching the market and a decline in retail demand.

“We have had a situation for four years where it has been a sellers’ market, whether they are dealer groups or leasing companies. That appears to have shifted in the past few weeks,” Glass’s chief car editor Rupert Pontin told Motor Trader.

“We have seen an increase in the volumes of cars coming back that are three years old as a result of increased registration three years ago and we have also seen a drop off in retail demand,” he said.

Pontin said there were concerns over the growth in the UK economy and the European market in decline. This month Chancellor George Osborne warned that Britain’s economic recovery was at a “critical” juncture and remained vulnerable in the event of another Eurozone recession.

“All that put together m has made the private used car buyers will just hold off on that purchase. So there are less sales on forecourts, the guys are having to work harder,” he said.

“We see it at auction as well. I was at a closed auction on Friday and the demand was atrocious,” said Pontin.

“It will be interesting to see how the vendors cope with this. A lot of the people in remarketing roles or the representatives who stand on the rostrum have not seen this type of market for three or four years,” he said.

In recent years used car values have been strong due to a shortage of stock caused by poor new car sales after the downturn in 2008.

“There have been much lower levels of cars in the market and really quite good retail demand,” said Pontin.


BENBen prepares new care centre for January opening

Ben, the dedicated automotive welfare charity, has confirmed its new purpose built care centre will open in January 2015 and will feature, for the first time, a specialist dementia centre and facilities for younger and physically disabled people.

The multi-million pound facility, which has 96 beds, has been built on land owned by the charity at its base near Ascot in Lynwood, Surrey.

As part of the redevelopment the charity has also built 69 retirement apartments and nine cottages which will are already being sold on a lease-hold basis to members of the public to help finance the bank loan secured by the charity for the development.

Ben said the Lynwood centre will deliver a world–class care facility that increases both the capacity and range of specialist services it can provide to those connected to the automotive industry.

“With an ageing population in the UK, and government policy focussing on caring for people in their own homes for as long as possible, residents tend to be frailer by the time access to residential care is agreed. Ben’s mission, to provide care and support to automotive people in times of need, will be enhanced through this development which ensures access to high quality care – both now and in the future,” said David Main, chief executive.

Lynwood’s new design incorporates specialist features that enable residents to maintain their independence. In addition, every resident will also be able to enjoy secure, landscaped outside space, either through the gardens at ground level or the specially developed first floor roof garden. Each room is generously sized with en suite wet room, flat screen TV, phone point and Wi-Fi access.


JaguarLandroverJaguar Land Rover opens ‘milestone’ China plant

Jaguar Land Rover has opened its first plant in China as the carmaker steps up efforts to double global sales by the end of this decade.

The West Midlands-based luxury car firm, owned by Indian conglomerate Tata Motors, said the plant will produce three JLR models by 2016, in partnership with local firm Chery Automobile Company.

The plant is part of a 10.9bn yuan (£1.1bn) investment and is located in the eastern Chinese province of Jiangsu, north of Shanghai.

The factory has a planned production capacity of 130,000 cars in its first year. The first model to roll off the line will be the luxury Range Rover Evoque vehicle, its most popular vehicle in China.




Posted by Sue Robinson on 24/10/2014