Economy, Auto

Carmakers Pile Into Europe Scrappage Offers

Carmakers Pile Into Europe Scrappage OffersCarmakers Pile Into Europe Scrappage Offers

Renault-Nissan and Kia are the latest car companies to launch car trade-in schemes, aimed at persuading customers to swap older, more polluting, car models for new ones.

Earlier Volkswagen and Toyota announced diesel scrappage schemes, joining BMW, Ford, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz and Vauxhall who have all launched schemes in the UK and other European countries, BBC reported.

The car companies will accept trade-ins from any brand registered before 2010. It comes as the “toughest ever” new-car emissions tests begin to be rolled out.

Kia and Renault are offering $2,700 off new models, for part-exchanged vehicles, all of which will be taken off the road.

Nissan is calling its scheme a “switch” scheme since not all the cars traded in will be scrapped. The firm is also offering a $2,700 incentive and encouraging customers to consider buying their all-electric Leaf model.

VW will give discounts of up to $8,100 to trade in diesel vehicles when buying a new car. Meanwhile, Toyota is offering up to $5,400 off models more than seven years old.

Amongst the biggest firms marketing cars in the UK only Peugeot, Land Rover, Honda, Citroen, Fiat and Volvo, have not announced trade-in schemes.

Car manufacturers have been under increasing political pressure, especially in Germany, to encourage consumers to buy less polluting cars.

It follows VW’s “Dieselgate” scandal, in which 11 million vehicles worldwide were found to have cheated on emissions tests.

VW’s UK scheme, which includes all its UK brands - including Audi, Seat, Skoda and VW Commercial Vehicles - follows an initiative launched in Germany. VW’s German scheme offered a discount of up to $12,000 to trade in diesel vehicles.

 Gov’t Grants  

Its UK scheme will apply to any diesel vehicle that has emissions standards lower than Euro 5 and was registered before 2010.

Incentives range from $2,400 off a new VW Up to $8,100 off a Sharan people carrier. Electric and hybrid vehicles, which attract government grants, will be included in the scheme.

Tim Urquhart, principal analyst at IHS Automotive, said the move was both about restoring VW’s credibility after “dieselgate” and boosting sales.

“We’ve seen a bit of a drop in the UK car market this year after years of really accelerated growth. I think the manufacturers are looking to get people into their showrooms,” he told the BBC’s Today program.

Toyota’s scheme runs from 1 September to 31 December and is open to any vehicle more than seven years old.

Customers can get a discount of $2,700 off models including Aygo, Prius and Hilux, and $5,400 off a Land Cruiser.

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