Owners of old cars could get £2500 towards buying a new or nearly-new car, if Govt adopts German plan.

The Government is considering plans to give up to £2500 to owners of old bangers – if they trade them in for new eco-friendly models.

The Daily Mail reports that Business Secretary Peter Mandelson is looking closely at a scheme operating in Germany. Buyers have been flocking to car dealers after the government there offered £2500 to owners of cars at least nine years old, if they replaced them with new or nearly new cars that produced low exhaust emissions.

Germany expects to hand out the equivalent of £1.5bn to 600,000 buyers, who in turn will give the car industry an enormous boost. As elsewhere in Europe, car sales had dipped sharply as the global economic recession took hold.

France has also seen a jump in sales since the government introduced a similar scheme, offering a £1000 bonus to owners of cars that were at least 10 years old. It is thought that this action will generate 100,000 extra sales by the end of 2009.

Lord Mandelson expressed interest in the scheme during a speech he gave to Confederation of British Industry leaders. ‘We are working to find ways to help the finance arms of the car sector keep providing the credit that keeps the industry moving,’ he said. ‘I am also looking at other countries’ experience with scrappage schemes.’

Officials confirmed that car subsidies were being considered, but said no decision had been taken yet on whether to back them.

Stephen Jury


February 6, 2009