Motor Industry Update 28 October 2020

Volkswagen ID.3 Volkswagen ID.3 - Photo credit: Volkswagen

‘No Deal’ tariffs would undermine Britain’s green recovery

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has urged both the UK and EU to re-engage in the Brexit negotiation process, honouring the commitment to get a good deal agreed before the end of the year, as new calculations show the high stakes of a ‘no deal’ outcome, not only for the automotive sector but for any hope of a green recovery from the pandemic.

Ending up with ‘no deal’ would be the worst possible outcome for the UK automotive industry, for car buyers and for the country’s ambitions to become a world leader in transport decarbonisation. The immediate imposition of blanket tariffs under World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules would not only add billions of pounds to the cost of trade but also to the cost of building and buying electric vehicles, which this government say they are keen to do.

The 10% ‘no deal’ WTO tariff would add at least £4.5 billion to the annual cost of fully assembled cars traded between the UK and the EU, which would mean an average increase of £1,900 per EU-built vehicle sold in the UK. For fully electric cars fitted with expensive battery technology, the increased cost rises to £2,800, making the £3,000 plug-in car grant for these vehicles null and void.

The tariff would also add around £2,000 on to the average cost of UK-built battery electric cars exported to the EU, making the UK’s products far less competitive and the UK far less attractive as a manufacturing investment base, hampering the UK’s ambition to be a global leader in zero emission vehicle development, production and deployment, severely damaging the country’s industrial competitiveness in the world.

Gerry Keaney, BVRLA Chief Executive, says:

“The time for political posturing has passed. We need policymakers on both sides to reach a deal soon so that business and consumers can acquire new vehicles in cost-effective confidence and support a green recovery across the UK automotive sector and the wider economy.”

Volkswagen’s ID.3 sets the tone for a safe and clean future

Volkswagen’s first ground-up full electric vehicle, the ID.3 takes the company into its third generation of car-making, following in the footsteps of the Beetle and Golf. The ID.3 is the first car in the ID family, with additional models expected over the next few years.

Renault reveals two new energy storage projects

Groupe Renault has announced two new second-life battery programmes with the SmartHubs Project in West Sussex in the UK and Advanced Battery Storage in Douai, France, which are two of the largest projects of their types in Europe.

The goal is to bridge the gap between electricity consumption and production to increase the share of renewable energy, as well as maintaining the balance between supply and demand on the grid by integrating different energy sources with intermittent production capacities.

Over 1,000 second-life batteries from Renault vehicles will be used alongside other technologies as part of a local energy system to help provide cleaner, lower cost energy for use in residential and social housing, transport and infrastructure as well as local businesses. The second-life batteries will be installed into Connected Energy’s specially designed E-STOR systems.