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UK: Drive for electric cars wins funds boost

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Electric car users installing a charging point at their homes will have 75 per cent of the cost paid by the government under plans to boost low carbon motoring .

The offer, which means each householder could contribute as little as £250 to the cost, is part of a new £37m government investment in electric vehicle charging infrastructure, announced by Patrick McLoughlin, transport secretary, during a visit to Sunderland on Tuesday.

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The funding will also cover 75 per cent of the cost, typically about £10,000, of installing public chargers in England, including rapid chargers at locations such as railway stations and on major roads.

The funding, drawn from £400m earmarked by the government over the lifetime of this parliament to support ultra-low emission driving, comes as ministers strive to build on the strength of the UK’s vehicle manufacturing sector by pushing for more inward investment in low carbon motoring.

Next month marks a potential step change in UK awareness of electric cars as Nissan’s Sunderland car plant begins production for sale of the all-electric Leaf, the UK’s first mass production of an all-electric car. The car is expected to retail at around £23,500.

The plant, which has invested £420m in electric motoring-related manufacturing, has capacity to produce 50,000 of the Leaf a year. A wider range of imported electric vehicles will become available in the UK this year.
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