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Scrappage schemes: who, what, when, where, why?


Three big players in the automotive industry have announced their scrappage schemes up until this point, with Ford grabbing most of the headlines you’d be forgiven if you didn’t realise Mercedes and BMW also had schemes of their own, too. Vauxhall have also recently revealed that their scrappage scheme has now removed over 20,000 cars since its introduction earlier this year.

However, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen a mass introduction of scrappage schemes – with the last boom being back in 2009 – but now, it’s back with a new forward-facing objective; to get high-emission vehicles off the road, and help to improve air quality. As well as this, you can also get a pretty decent deal off a brand-spanking new motor, which is nice too.

Eight years ago, cars 10 years or older were valued at £2,000 at trade-in completely regardless of how much they’re actually worth. It was split between a government subsidy and the manufacturers and it goes towards a new car.

All the current scrappage schemes from Mercedes, BMW and Ford offer a similar £2,000 discount when you trade in a car that was manufactured before 2010, either petrol or diesel, which essentially means that they don’t comply with Euro 5 Cleanliness Rules. However, the chief difference between Ford’s system and the other main ones, is that Ford have pledged to scrap every car that is delivered through the scheme whereas Mercedes and BMW are looking to keep some on the roads.


Currently, Ford will only allow you to trade in against a few particular car models, but not their full range. Mercedes will only allow a the trade-in discount on diesel, hybrid or electric cars in their range, and similarly BMW only allows the discount to be applied on new cars that emit below 130g/km of CO2.

Ford are also including the purchasing of commercial vehicles in their scheme too, meaning that a trade-in discount along with other potential discounts could lead to a £7,000 saving on a new Ford Transit Custom.

This is leading to some concerns that the base £2,000 discount in personal vehicles isn’t actually that much of a saving when it comes to new cars. Especially as the majority of new models in all of these manufacturer ranges amount to around £20,000 and many opinions show that savvy buyers can often haggle that amount off the forecourt price anyway.

If you are looking into this scheme, the government grants on low emission vehicles is also something to consider. Category 1 and 2 vehicles under the low-emissions grant scheme can save up to £4,500 on a purchase of a new electric, or low emission vehicle, which you can investigate more here.

All of these schemes end on 31st December this year, so make sure you check them out to see if you are eligible if you are interested.

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