Leading automakers, including Ford, BMW, and JLR, seek clarity from the UK government regarding the proposed delay in the 2030 internal combustion engine (ICE) ban.
Ford’s UK Chair, Lisa Brankin, stresses the importance of the 2030 ICE ban for a successful EV transition.
BMW and JLR emphasize the need for clear policies on zero-emission vehicles.
The SMMT believes confusion over climate policy could impede the UK’s shift to electric vehicles.
Amid discussions in the UK government to potentially delay its ambitious 2030 ban on new gasoline and diesel car sales, major automotive players like Ford, BMW, and Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) have voiced their concerns. They emphasize the importance of maintaining the current timeline to ensure a smooth and clear transition to electric vehicles (EVs).
Lisa Brankin, Ford’s UK Chair, has warned that any relaxation in the 2030 target could jeopardize the nation’s efforts towards electrification. Ford believes this deadline is crucial for accelerating its EV initiatives, with Brankin highlighting the need for “ambition, commitment, and consistency” from the government. She pointed out Ford’s significant investments in the UK, amounting to £430 million ($531 million USD), aligned with the 2030 target. Moreover, Ford has previously committed to selling only fully electric passenger vehicles in Europe by the end of this decade and has further invested £380 million ($470 million USD) in its Halewood plant to produce EV components.
However, the present ambiguity surrounding the ICE ban, particularly regarding hybrid vehicles and their zero-emission capabilities, has left the industry seeking clarity. A spokesperson for BMW in the UK echoed this sentiment, stressing the importance of clear guidelines for zero-emission vehicles. Notably, BMW, which manufactures Mini and Rolls-Royce cars in the UK, is a significant stakeholder in the country’s automotive landscape.
Similarly, Jaguar Land Rover, owned by India’s Tata Motors and recognized as Britain’s largest automaker by production, has expressed a desire for certainty in the UK’s climate policies.
Adding to the concerns, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) highlighted that any ambiguity in climate policy could deter the country’s progression towards electric mobility. Mike Hawes, SMMT CEO, emphasized that for consumers to confidently make the switch to EVs, a consistent government message, enticing incentives, and a robust charging infrastructure are imperative.
In conclusion, while the UK automotive industry acknowledges the recent commitments by major players for EV production, there’s a collective call for policy clarity to ensure that the nation remains on track for a successful and clear transition to electric vehicles.