Recovery plan for the automobile sector: 7000€ subsidy for electric cars

Charging station for electric cars

The French government’s recovery plan for the automobile sector will be presented today and we already know that “clean” cars will be favored, with a 7000€ subsidy for electric cars and 4000€ subsidy for hybrid cars.

Even if the exact terms are not yet known as they will be announced today in the Council of Ministers, the rumors about the incentives for electric and hybrid cars are already very welcome. In a sector that is suffering from weak sales, the stimulus can only help. For hybrid vehicles, details about which vehicles exactly will be concerned are still to be released.

Other insurance bonus related adjustments are also planned, such as an 100€ or 150€ annual bonus for low-emission combustion engine vehicles. Small cars buyers will certainly benefit from this.

The State has also made a commitment to buy more electric vehicles for urban use, and to buy more hybrid vehicles, aiming for up to 25% of its fleet. Recharge station infrastructure roll-out will be “accelerated” but further details are yet to be revealed (and this has been promised for a while already).

Finally, other measures that concern the wider automobile sector are also planned, such as financing for car or equipment manufacturers that find themselves in financial difficulty, 350 million euros that will be earmarked for R&D in the sector, and development of a recycling arm, etc. These measures will be valid until the end of 2012 and will be reviewed for the 2013 budget.

The question that comes up is who will really benefit from the measures? It seems that Renault will be a big winner, as the ZOE will now become more accessible to the general public. For the MIA, this is also good news, even thought this smaller car will need to stand the comparison test with the ZOE.

As far as PSA is concerned, I am less certain that the impact of the stimulus will be felt as much, as the hybrid models proposed by the group are relatively expensive, and are more difficult to sell. In terms of hybrids, Toyota, as the hybrid champion, will certainly stand to gain the most.

What do you think of this stimulus plan? Does it make you want to buy an electric or hybrid vehicle, if you weren’t planning this before? Do you this that French vehicle manufacturers will really benefit from this?

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