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ULEZ expansion could prompt 40% of Londoners to switch to EVs

Electric vehicle charging

Greater London's motor retailers need to be poised to help consumers adapt to the capital's expanding restrictions on older, higher polluting cars.

Plans to expand the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) could prompt 39.8% of car owners in London to make the switch to an electric vehicle (EV), research has revealed.

In Move Electric’s research of 384 Greater London residents who owned a car, 39.8% said the expansion would make them more likely to consider an EV as their next car.

In the research, those in favour of ULEZ expanding were more likely to consider an EV as their next car, with 57.1% saying the expansions would make them more likely to consider the switch.

Earlier this year, Transport for London (TfL) issued a public consultation on plans to increase the emissions-based charging zone to almost 600 square miles from the current 147 square mile zone, to encompass most areas inside the M25 to tackle urban air quality.

Across car owners, 41.9% support the Mayor of London’s plans to expand the ULEZ boundary, set to commence in August 2023.

James Attwood, Move Electric editor, said: “The intent of ULEZ to deter drivers from using old, polluting vehicles and to decrease air pollution in the capital is clearly working as our research shows 39.8% of car owners in Greater London could make the switch to electric if the zone was to expand further next year.

Electric car charging“Alongside expanding the ULEZ, it is important London’s boroughs, and the whole of the UK, is ready to meet widespread EV adoption, with sufficient electric vehicle public charging infrastructure, as well as ensuring more investment is made towards greener transport methods such as cycleways and electric buses.”

TfL's plans to expand its ULEZ have been branded the “wrong move at the wrong time” by the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA).

More than a quarter (27.6%) of car owners in Greater London told Move Electric their vehicle will not comply with ULEZ requirements, while 7.8% of drivers were not sure whether their vehicle was compliant. Of those with non-compliant vehicles, 78.3% said they do not support the suggested ULEZ expansion.

The research also found expanding the ULEZ could prompt 38.5% of car owners in Greater London to sell their vehicle – regardless of whether it meets emissions standards – though those with non-compliant vehicles were more likely to consider selling their vehicle, with 79.3% stating the zone expansion could lead them to get rid of their current vehicle. While 20.2% of owners with compliant cars would consider selling their vehicle if the zone were expanded.

Research commissioned by Motorway also revealed that one-in-three (36%) Londoners plan to sell their vehicle due to the proposed ULEZ extension alongside the rising cost of living.

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