Drivers wanting switch to EVs now face huge wait as manufacturers pull the plug

GB News guests debate using electric cars

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Drivers who are ready to make the switch to electric are discovering they might have to wait a minimum of 12 months before they can get behind the wheel of their new car. In some instances, dealerships are putting the brakes on orders of popular models altogether.

Demand for electric cars in the UK has surged massively, with one in eight cars registered in May being fully electric.

This, together with a global shortage of semiconductor chips, has forced carmakers to slow down production of new vehicles and caused long delays for deliveries.

This has even led to some brands closing order books altogether, especially for popular and affordable models.

MG, for instance, says it has now suspended orders for the new ZS EV following an “unprecedented level of demand” for the vehicle.

Skoda and Volkswagen have also deleted certain electric models from their Enyaq and ID.3 line-ups.

Buyers could also be waiting up to two years for models including the Tesla Model S and Model X, 12 months for the Volkswagen ID.3 and equally as long for comparatively humble models like the Citroen e-C4.

A Volkswagen dealer said: “I advise all customers to be a year or a year-and-a-half ahead of the schedule if they want a vehicle desperately.

“We don’t think, internally at least, this is going away in a rush. It’s the new norm.”

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Founder and CEO of Ginny Buckley said: “While the surge in demand for electric cars is welcome news for air quality, it’s led to delays for many drivers who are keen to make the switch as soon as they can.

“This may be because their current lease is coming to an end, or they are keen to cash in on the current boom in used car prices.

“Cars like the VW ID.3 which were freely available twelve months ago now have waiting times of more than a year.

“This is down to a perfect storm of increased demand, coupled with a shortage of vital components caused by global events.

“Dealerships are telling us this problem isn’t going away any time soon, but if you can be flexible with your tech, trim and colour, then some cars may be available sooner.

“Don’t expect a bargain though – we have seen many humble family cars which dealers are trying to sell for way above the official list price.’’

The news comes as suggestions of introducing a tax on electric vehicles based on their emissions output have been slammed by an electromobility expert, who called them a “worrying deterrent”.

Earlier this month, Professor Alastair Lewis, chair of the Department for Transport Science Advisory Council, argued that particulate matter emitted from electric car tyres posed a risk to public health.

He said that it posed a larger problem than CO2 emissions from petrol and diesel vehicles.

Professor Lewis added: “PM 2.5 is considered to cause the largest amount of damage to public health… Nitrogen dioxide [from diesel fumes] comes second.”

He also suggested that charges for low emission zones are likely to be replaced with alternative levies as drivers switch to electric vehicles.

Mike Coulton, EV Consultant at Volkswagen Financial Services UK, explained that a proposed “tyre tax” linked to particulate emissions from EV tyres is “nonsensical”.

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