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While most schemes aren’t funded by the government anymore, some car manufacturers are still offering scrappage schemes in the UK to encourage everyone to trade in their old cars for newer, more environmentally-friendly models. If your car meets the criteria, there are some good deals out there to help you save when buying a new or used car. 

That’s where we come in. From what these schemes are to the best car scrappage deals you can get with different kinds of vehicles, this handy guide covers everything you need to know about scrappage schemes so you can trade in your car and save some money on a new one. 


What is a scrappage scheme?

A scrappage scheme is a scheme run by car manufacturers to encourage people to part-exchange their old (and usually more polluting) car for a newer, eco-friendlier one

These schemes have been around for a while and were first introduced in the UK in 2009 to encourage new car sales and help people out after the financial crisis.

And they don’t just help you get rid of your car – they also offer you a bit of cash towards the new car when you’re trading in the old one – ideal!

Why are scrappage schemes important?

UK car scrappage schemes are important for two reasons:

  1. They help get older, high-emission cars off the road 
  2. They incentivise people to trade them in for newer cars, which are usually more eco-friendly. 

Helping people to get rid of their older cars, which produce more harmful emissions, plays a big part in the government’s goal of bringing all greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050. 

On top of this, in November 2020, the British government announced that the sale of new petrol and diesel cars will be banned by 2030, so scrappage schemes are a good way to get ahead of the game. 

Is there a government scrappage scheme this year?

Currently, there are no government-backed car scrappage schemes in the UK for 2021, 2022 or 2023

But this doesn’t mean you can’t make a saving. You can still get a good car scrappage deal since some car manufacturers are offering great discounts if you want to trade in your older car for a brand-new one. 

Is there a diesel scrappage scheme?

At the time of writing this guide (November 2022) there are no UK-wide, government-backed scrappage schemes for diesel cars.

Toxin tax and car scrappage schemes

In 2017, a new tax for diesel cars was announced, with owners having to pay a daily fee for driving diesel vehicles. 

Since this tax is part of the government’s aim to reduce carbon emissions, they might also reintroduce a diesel scrappage scheme to help get these vehicles off the road – nothing’s been announced yet so we’ll just have to wait and see.

Which car manufacturers are offering scrappage schemes?

At the time of writing (September 2022), there are currently no manufacturer scrappage schemes running in the UK

However, manufacturers like Kia, Hyundai and Renault have all run scrappage schemes in the past, so it’s worth checking online or at the dealership to see if there are any deals running when you decide to get a new car. 

Does it matter what age or condition your trade-in car is?

Okay, now let’s get into the nitty-gritty.

The age of the car is usually an important factor in scrappage schemes and can affect what kind of discount your vehicle is eligible for (if any). This is because your car needs to meet a particular emissions standard to qualify for a scheme, and these standards are usually determined by when the vehicle was made. You can use this checker via the Vehicle Certification Agency to find out the emission standards for your car, or, check the car’s V5C document.

Luckily, the condition of the car you’re trading in isn’t as important for most UK scrappage schemes. If you’re savvy, this could mean trading in a car worth £750 for £2,000 or £3,000!

Does my car qualify for a scrappage scheme?

Whether your car is eligible for a scrappage scheme depends on the criteria each manufacturer is looking for. Generally, there are a couple of basic rules for most schemes:

  • Trade-in vehicles need to be around eight years old
  • You need to have owned the car you want to trade-in for a certain period of time – which can vary from 60 days to up to 6 months depending on the car maker

You can always check with the manufacturer to see if your car meets their requirements and find out how much you can trade it in for. 

How to get the best deal for your car

Getting the best scrappage deal for your car mean doesn’t always mean putting in lots of time and effort.

While some offers may be tempting, especially if you’re trying to trade in an old diesel car, you could find a better price elsewhere – part of finding the best savings is shopping around and keeping an eye out for regular discounts on top of trade-in deals. You could also try haggling in the dealership if you think you could get a bargain! 

So, whether you’re treating yourself to a newer model or are looking for a better car for your needs, car scrappage schemes are a great way to save yourself a bit of money as you make the important but exciting decision to buy a car.

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