Government announces new ZEV mandate

The government has announced it will introduce a new ZEV mandate to drive the transition to net zero.

As part of the initiative it will require manufacturers to ensure that a percentage of their new cars are zero emission. The proposed minimum ZEV target for new cars begins at 22% in 2024, increasing to 80% in 2030 and 100% in 2035.

For vans, the target is 10% in 2024, 70% by 2030 and 100% in 2035.

Meanwhile, the government has also pledged nearly £400m to develop the country’s EV charging network.  

Transport secretary Mark Harper said: “Transport is one of the most important sectors for achieving net zero by 2050, and so we must accelerate our efforts to decarbonise how people get from A to B while growing our economy and supporting thousands of green jobs.

“From expanding our charging network to boosting the production of cleaner aviation fuel, today’s announcement is a great stride forwards – offering people more choice on how to stay connected while delivering the carbon reductions needed to achieve net zero.”

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: “Automotive is on track to deliver zero emission motoring, so we welcome this long-awaited consultation on a watershed regulation for the UK new car and van market. We want regulation that gives consumers choice and affordability, and enables manufacturers to transition sustainably and competitively.

“While the proposals rightly reflect the sector’s diversity, late publication and lack of regulatory certainty make product planning near impossible, and the continued lack of clarity as to what technologies will be permitted beyond 2030 undermines attempts to secure investment.

“Measures to improve the customer charging experience are a step in the right direction, but the fact that contactless credit or debit card payments will not be available on the vast majority of public chargers is a major failing that will significantly disadvantage EV drivers. It is also disappointing that, unlike in other countries, there is no commensurate regulation to drive investment into the public network given that paucity of chargepoints remains the biggest barrier to buying an electric vehicle. Ultimately, for this mandate to be successful, infrastructure providers must now turn promises into investment and catch up with the commitments of vehicle manufacturers.

“The UK new car and van market is already moving at pace towards electrification, the result of massive investment by manufacturers and increased consumer demand. If the UK is to lead the global race to zero emission mobility, however, it must go further and faster in unlocking infrastructure investment, incentivising EV ownership and helping ensure more of these vehicles are developed and built in Britain.”