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Brands clamber to offer scrappage scheme discounts

Date: 04 September 2017   |   Author: Daniel Puddicombe

A multitude of manufacturers have launched new car scrappage schemes in an effort to negate falling sales following four consecutive months of registration drops.

Renault, Nissan, Seat, Audi, Volkswagen, Skoda and Kia all launched programmes late last week, following similar schemes by Hyundai, Ford, Mercedes, BMW and Vauxhall last month.

Only retail customers can apply for the discounts and the programmes will only last for a short period of time. The vehicles scrapped must be of Euro 4 standard or older, registered before 31 December 2009 and must have been owned by the customer for at least 90 days.

Generally, firms are offering discounts of £2,000 per scrapped vehicle, although the scheme can be used in conjunction with regular promotions, meaning customers could save up to £7,000 off the price of a new car or van.

The launch of the scheme comes during the crucial 'plate-change' month. However, many brands have played on the environmental benefits afforded customers trading in older, more polluting vehicles for new and clean cars.

In April 2009, the UK Government launched a scrappage scheme in order to boost the economy during the credit crunch. The government contributed £1,000 towards the purchase of a new vehicle with participating manufacturers matching the government's share.

A recent survey suggested that two-thirds of motorists support a scrappage scheme in order to get the most polluting vehicles off UK roads.

According to the poll by road safety charity IAM Roadsmart, 64% of the 1,400 respondents said they supported a scrappage scheme, as opposed to 27% who did not.

Just 3% of those polled said the government's proposed air quality plan would solve the issue of pollution.

However, three-quarters (75%) said that encouraging people to change their driving behaviour should play a part in the government's approach to tackling air quality.

And it looks as though motorists have been influenced by negative press coverage, with 67% of them saying they either mistrust or strongly mistrust carmakers to sell cars that will match customer expectations for environmental performance.

"It is clear to me that the public at large feel the government needs to be decisive and proactive when it comes to making our air quality better," said Sarah Sillars, IAM RoadSmart chief executive officer. "They see strong government direction as key to making sure it happens. We must not forget that drivers themselves have a part to play in the way they drive ? it is within the power of each of us to become a better and more eco-friendly driver and our responsibility to do so."