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Do scrappage schemes need to offer more?


At last count, there are currently six car manufacturers in the UK offering a scrappage scheme in some shape or form. Mainly allowing a customer to trade in an older model that falls below modern pollution targets, for you to get a discount on a purchase of a brand new, less polluting model. However, research from car buying service Carwow has suggested that the majority of consumers don’t think that these schemes offer enough.

As it currently stands, BMW, Ford, Mercedes, Hyundai, Toyota and Vauxhall all offer £2,000 off a new model for your older more polluting cars. Some will offer more on their base, some will only offer selected models and differ on what actually happens to your car after you trade it in – but for the full breakdown, check out this little guide here.

However, half of the buyers questioned by the Carwow survey revealed that they wouldn’t consider a scheme that offered anything less than £3,000, with one in six even saying that they would need at least £7,000 to get them to go for it.

For the majority of brand new models offered by these big manufacturers, the low threshold of £2,000 does very little to offer a considerable discount. Taking Ford, for example, with a brand new Focus coming with a £19,415 price tag at its smallest, base model only comes down to £15,000 with the maximum discount offered. A lot of consumers can claim that they can knock off that amount with haggling alone.


When compared to the scrappage scheme of 2009-2010, the aim is clearly different. The 2017 scheme is aimed squarely at the goal of reducing emissions across the board, and getting high polluting cars and vans off the road and incentivising low emitting new cars – especially hybrids and all electric vehicles.

Despite the discount offers, do these scrappage schemes offer enough for the average consumer to be interesting? Do they need to offer more, especially as the focus lies on emissions.

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