Plug-in Car Grant: electric cars the government pays you to buy

The government Plug-in Car Grant provides a discount of up to £3,000 towards the purchase of electric cars. We reveal what you can buy

  • Vehicles eligible for a plug-in grant

    Vehicles eligible for a plug-in grant

    © Ford

    You can get a discount on the price of a new electric car through the government’s Plug-in Car Grant (PiCG) scheme. To qualify for the grant, the cars must have CO2 emissions of less than 50g/km, be able to travel at least 70 miles without any emissions, and cost less than £50,000. The grant will pay 35 percent of the purchase price, up to a maximum of £3,000. This is a list of eligible cars available at the time of writing (November 2020).

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  • BMW i3 and i3S

    BMW i3 and i3S

    © BMW

    The BMW i3 and i3S cost £36,575 and £39,105 respectively, before the government plug-in car grant. Both models come with a 42.2kWh battery (120Ah in BMW-speak), but the i3S offers superior performance in exchange for reduced range. In standard form, the i3 is capable of covering 182 to 190 miles, while the i3S offers an official 173 to 175 miles.

  • Citroen e-SpaceTourer

    Citroen e-SpaceTourer

    © Citroen

    The Citroen e-SpaceTourer is now available to order in the UK, with customer deliveries starting in November 2020. It offers space for up to nine people and is capable of travelling up to 143 miles on a single charge. There are two versions: Feel and Business. The e-SpaceTourer Feel costs £46,250, while the e-SpaceTourer Business costs £45,600. These are after the government grant has been deducted.

  • DS 3 Crossback E-Tense

    DS 3 Crossback E-Tense

    © DS Automobiles

    You can order a DS 3 Crossback E-Tense in one of four trim levels: Performance Line, Prestige, Ultra Prestige and La Premiere. The prices range from £30,990 to £36,490, after the government plug-in car grant. The electric SUV offers a range of 191 to 206 miles.

  • Ford Mustang Mach-E

    Ford Mustang Mach-E

    © Ford

    The figures are impressive: 379 miles of electric range, 0-62mph in 3.7 seconds, and 73 miles of range available in just 10 minutes. First deliveries of the Ford Mustang Mach-E are expected in early 2021, with prices ranging from £40,350 for the standard car to £46,650 for the AWD model.

  • Honda e

    Honda e

    © Honda

    It’s worth noting that most of the cars available with a Plug-in Car Grant will be purchased on finance or leased. So a figure of £249 a month for the standard Honda e is more relevant. The more powerful Honda e Advance costs £299, but its increased performance means a slight drop in the 137 miles of electric range.

  • Hyundai Ioniq Electric

    Hyundai Ioniq Electric

    © Hyundai

    The Hyundai Ioniq Electric is backed by a five-year unlimited mileage warranty, so it’s one of the most sensible electric cars you can buy. The Premium model costs £30,950, while the Premium SE is priced at £32,950. These prices are after the government grant has been deducted. Officially, the Ioniq Electric offers a range of 193 miles.

  • Hyundai Kona Electric

    Hyundai Kona Electric

    © Hyundai

    Earlier this year, Hyundai opened a new production plant in the Czech Republic to meet demand for the Kona Electric. The SE model costs £30,150, while the flagship Premium SE costs £38,500. These prices are after the grant. Up to 300 miles of electric range is available.

  • Kia e-Niro

    Kia e-Niro

    © Kia

    The Kia e-Niro undercuts the Ioniq and Kona by having a sub-£30,000 starting price. Indeed, the e-Niro 2 costs £29,595, the e-Niro 3 is priced at £33,850, while the e-Niro 4+ costs £36,145. Although the e-Niro 2 offers 180 miles of electric range, the other two models manage up to 282 miles.

  • Kia Soul EV

    Kia Soul EV

    © Kia

    Like the e-Niro, the Kia Soul EV is covered by a seven-year/100,000-mile warranty. Its 64kWh battery pack offers up to 280 miles of range, with the First Edition costing £34,295 after the Plug-in Car Grant.

  • MG 5 EV

    MG 5 EV

    © MG

    We suspect the MG 5 EV will prove to be very popular. It costs just £24,495 after the plug-in grant. It also offers up to 1,456 litres of luggage space with the rear seats folded down. It can travel up to 214 miles on a full charge and even comes with a seven-year warranty.

  • MG ZS EV

    MG ZS EV

    © MG

    The MG ZS EV costs £1,000 more than the MG 5 EV, but there’s a sense that you’re getting more for your money. It just feels a little more special. That said, the electric range is lower, at 163 miles.

  • Mini Electric

    Mini Electric

    © Mini

    For a similar price, you could own a Mini Electric. It costs £24,900 after the plug-in grant and offers an electric range of up to 145 miles. As with all EVs, the range will vary depending on your driving style, the weather, topography and use of on-board features.

  • Nissan e-NV200

    Nissan e-NV200

    © Nissan

    The Nissan e-NV200 Combi is an MPV offering seating for five or seven. Prices start from £29,755 after the government grant, but you’ll have to make do with a combined electric range of 124 miles.

  • Nissan Leaf

    Nissan Leaf

    © Nissan

    The Nissan Leaf gives you a choice of electric driving range: 168 miles or 239 miles. Prices start from £26,845, but you’ll pay at least £33,295 for the Leaf E+, which offers the longest range.

  • Peugeot e-208

    Peugeot e-208

    © Peugeot

    Up to 217 miles of electric range is available from the Peugeot e-208. That’s good for a car costing as little as £26,025 after the government Plug-in Car Grant. That said, the flagship GT model costs a hefty £30,275.

  • Peugeot e-2008

    Peugeot e-2008

    © Peugeot

    The electric range drops to 206 miles in the Peugeot e-2008, but the fact that it comes in a more fashionable SUV suit means it’s likely to be just as popular as the e-208. Prices range from £29,065 to £35,190.

  • Polestar 2

    Polestar 2

    © Polestar

    It’s worth remembering that to be eligible for the Plug-in Car Grant, vehicles must cost less than £50,000. The basic Polestar 2 undercuts this by £100, so the price you’ll pay is £46,900. Order a Polestar 2 today (in October 2020), and you can expect to take delivery in January 2021.

  • Renault Zoe

    Renault Zoe

    © Renault

    The Renault Zoe was one of the first mainstream electric cars to go on sale in the UK. Today, the Zoe offers up to 245 miles of electric range, with prices starting from £26,995. It has a five-year warranty, while the battery is covered for eight years.

  • Seat Mii Electric

    Seat Mii Electric

    © Seat

    The Seat Mii Electric is one of the most affordable electric cars in the UK, with prices starting from £19,800. It’s based on the standard Seat Mii city car, but a range of 160 miles makes it ideal for city dwellers.

  • Skoda Citigo-e iV

    Skoda Citigo-e iV

    © Skoda

    The good news is that the Skoda Citigo-e iV is affordable and offers up to 170 miles of electric range. The bad news is that you can’t buy it new. Shame. Still, there’s the new Envaq iV on the way.

  • Smart EQ Fortwo

    Smart EQ Fortwo

    © Smart

    Smart EQ Fortwo prices start from £17,550 after the government grant. There’s also an EQ Fortwo Cabrio, but you’ll pay £21,120 to enjoy the fresh air.

  • Smart EQ Forfour

    Smart EQ Forfour

    © Smart

    Alternatively, the Smart EQ Forfour is more practical, with prices starting from £18,035.

  • Tesla Model 3

    Tesla Model 3

    © Tesla

    Tesla Model 3 prices start from £40,490, but the Performance model costs £56,490, so it’s not eligible for the Plug-in Car Grant. On the plus side, the Long Range version does qualify for the grant. It offers up to 348 miles of electric range.

  • Vauxhall Corsa-e

    Vauxhall Corsa-e

    © Vauxhall

    The Corsa-e SE Nav and Elite Nav cost £27,665 and £30,310 respectively, which might seem like a lot for a Vauxhall Corsa. However, it shares much in common with the Peugeot e-208 and offers up to 209 miles of electric range. An all-new Mokka-e is coming soon. It will cost at least £30,000 after the grant.

  • Vauxhall Vivaro-e Life

    Vauxhall Vivaro-e Life

    © Vauxhall

    You can also buy an electric Vauxhall MPV. As the name suggests, the Vivaro-e Life is based on the Vauxhall Vivaro van and offers seating for seven, eight or nine. Prices range from £34,165 to £45,910.

  • Volkswagen e-Up

    Volkswagen e-Up

    © Volkswagen

    At the time of writing, the Volkswagen e-Up is currently unavailable for new car sales in the UK.

  • Volkswagen e-Golf

    Volkswagen e-Golf

    © Volkswagen

    It’s still possible to buy a new Volkswagen e-Golf, but you’ll need to be quick. It offers 144 miles of electric range, so you might prefer to wait for the new ID.3 – effectively this car’s replacement.

  • Volkswagen ID.3

    Volkswagen ID.3

    © Volkswagen

    The ID.3 electric car will be available with prices starting from £29,900. That’s based on the entry-level ID.3 Life after the plug-in grant has been subtracted. The 58kWh battery gives a range of 263 miles, while a larger 77kWh battery increases the driving range to 336 miles.