Petrol and diesel car sales ban could start as early as 2032

13/02/2020 14:15
Feb - Petrol and diesel car sales ban could start as early as 2032.jpg

The UK's planned ban on sales of new petrol, diesel or hybrid cars could start as early as 2032, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has said.

Last week, the government sparked industry concern after bringing the date forward from 2040 to 2035 in a bid to hit zero-carbon emission targets.

But Mr Shapps told BBC Radio 5 live it would happen by 2035, "or even 2032," adding there would be consultation.

The SMMT car trade body had previously said the 2035 figure was "concerning".

The government is setting out its proposals in the run-up to a United Nations climate summit in November.

The summit, known as COP26, is being hosted in Glasgow. It is an annual UN-led gathering set up to assess progress on tackling climate change.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who announced the 2035 date, said at the time that the ban would come even earlier if possible.

A Department for Transport spokesperson said: "We are consulting on a range of possible dates to bring forward the end to the sale of petrol and diesel cars and vans.

"The consultation proposal for this is 2035 - or earlier if a faster transition appears feasible - as well as including hybrids for the first time."

The UK has set a target of emitting virtually zero carbon by 2050. Experts warned that the original target date of 2040 would still leave old conventional cars on the roads 10 years later.

Once the ban comes into effect, only electric or hydrogen cars and vans will be available.

Hybrid vehicles are now included in the proposals, which were originally announced in July 2017.

Despite this, RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: "While the government appears to be constantly moving the goalposts forward for ending the sale of new petrol, diesel and hybrid vehicles, drivers should not be worried about opting for a plug-in hybrid now.

"They are potentially the perfect stepping stone for those who want to go electric, but who have concerns about range, as they aren't as expensive as a battery electric vehicle. At the moment, they give drivers the best of both worlds."

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