Diesel bans could impact values

Calls to effectively ban or reduce usage of existing diesel cars in major towns and cities could see the values of affected vehicles fall significantly, predicts Glass’s.

Glass’s believes that it could make some older cars effectively ‘unsellable’ if there is a widespread move to stop diesels from entering urban areas.

Rupert Pontin, head of valuations at Glass’s, said, ‘The UK is seeing an ongoing problem with air quality in many areas and it is a serious issue with the finger being pointed firmly at older diesel cars.

‘Defra recently released a report suggesting the introduction of ‘clean air zones’ in six cities while there is also understandable anger towards car manufacturers following the recent emissions scandal.

‘All of this is creating momentum behind an anti-diesel movement. However, there are more than 10 million diesel cars in the UK and we are asking what happens to them if these ideas become reality?’

Rupert said that the Defra report suggested that in London, Birmingham, Leeds, Nottingham, Derby and Southampton, access to urban areas for certain kinds of vehicle should be restricted. It adds that 38 out of 43 areas in the UK are failing EU air quality standards thanks to high levels of NOx, largely from diesels.

‘If these areas decide to enforce restrictions or bans on diesel use, it inevitably makes the cars affected less usable and will reduce demand. Owners of diesel vehicles affected will see the values reduced, perhaps quite considerably, so it is reasonable to look at the implications. Should they be recompensed in some way? Should we see the introduction of a scrappage scheme, as recently suggested by MPs in the Commons Environmental Audit Committee?’

Rupert added that there was also a strong argument that simply singling out diesel as the ‘bad fuel’ also represented something of an oversimplification of the whole subject of emissions.