Drivers will soon be offered up to £3,000 to turn their cars’ engines off and choose greener ways on transport.
A new trial programme which will be launched in Coventry in the spring will offer drivers ‘credits’ to give up their vehicles and use public transport, according to The Times.
The credits will allow people to use alternative transport options, including bicycles, electric scooters and taxis.
The scheme will reportedly last for two years and is designed especially for the owners of diesel cars built before 2016 and petrol motors before 2006.
The West Midlands project is part of a £22 million government-funded initiative.
In its recent Budget, the West Midlands Combined Authority has also prioritised the development of a ‘Sprint’ rapid bus network using zero-emission vehicles and support for the continuing conversion of buses from diesel to hybrid.
Speaking to ELN the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) Chief Executive Officer Mike Hawes said: “There is an increasing range of mobility solutions available, both owned and shared, but mostly focused on inner urban environments.
“For many, however, the convenience, range and capacity of a passenger car will remain the preferred option and one which, with the ever-widening range of electrified cars now available, can also be emission free at the tailpipe.
“Authorities will want to encourage the most appropriate form of transport for the location and journey, but which should also include increasing significantly the investment in charging infrastructure which remains inadequate if our shared ambitions for a net zero future are to be achieved.”
Edmund King, AA President, said: “Coventry was right at the heart of the historic revolution of the British motor industry and known to many as the UK’s motor city or ‘British Detroit’. How ironic that a local authority in Coventry is now offering to pay people to ditch their wheels.
“The timing of this initiative seems somewhat odd when many are avoiding public transport due to covid and leading brands such as Jaguar, with close links to Coventry, are going all-electric by 2025.
“The money would probably be better spent on providing electric charging points for those without off-street parking rather than giving mobility credits for services that people will use when they need to or feel safe to.”
Launching a ‘green industrial revolution’ initiative last year, the government has brought forward its ban on new petrol and diesel vehicle sales to 2030.