While many drivers are choosing to go electric for environmental reasons, there is no doubt that the financial savings are also a huge part of the rationale. Quite apart from the obvious fuel savings, grants and incentives play a huge part in the decision to go electric. Most of these grants and incentives are part of the Irish Governments enticements to meet Irelands ambitious green climate targets. Many of these offerings will come to an end in mid-2023 as the Government change their focus from the individual and commercial driver and invest more heavily in infrastructure around electric driving.
For now, here is a handy guide to the financial incentives and grants that you can avail of when going electric.
The Government will assist in the purchase of the vehicle itself. A maximum grant of €5,000 is available for qualifying new M1 (passenger cars) and battery electric vehicles (BEVs) when purchased privately. The approved electric vehicle must have a full price of less than €60,000 and more than €14,000 to be eligible to receive this grant. The full price of the vehicle to the customer includes all optional extras, paint, delivery and any other charges, but excludes any incentives such as other grants or rebates. Read more on seai.ie.
There are also grants for vehicles purchase available for businesses who want to go electric and are considering getting their fleet plugged in. A maximum grant of €3,800 can be claimed on new BEVs that are purchased commercially. Again this applies only to commercial vehicles that cost more than €14,000 and less than €60,000 and the grant allocated depends on the list price of the BEV you choose. Learn more about Electric Vehicle Grant Values here.
Recently large panel vans which classify as N1L have become eligible for a grant of €7,600, provided the van is listed at a price of €90,000 or less.
Small Public Service Vehicles (SPSVs) such as taxis can get up to €10,000 in grants to purchase a full battery eSPSV with an additional €2,500 available for wheelchair-accessible vehicles. This grant is doubled if a gas guzzling vehicle is scrapped as a result of the change to electric. The scheme has been operating since 2018 and it is estimated that more than 1,400 taxi drivers, hackneys and luxury car for hire owners have benefited as they moved to EVs.
Electric vehicle drivers can claim up to €600 towards the purchase and installation of an electric vehicle home charger unit. Certain criteria does apply but the grant is open to homeowners to apply whether they own an electric vehicle or not. So, you can put a charger in for future use with assistance from the Irish governments award scheme, Zero Emission Vehicles Ireland (ZEVI).
There are savings to be made on motor tax too. The current motor tax on a Battery Electric Vehicle in Ireland is the lowest rate possible at €120 a year, while PHEVs are typically taxed at around €170 per annum. This is considerably less than the rates paid by those driving conventionally fuelled cars and vans.
Until the end of 2024, businesses, farmers and sole traders can claim 100% Accelerated Capital Allowances (ACA) for investments in energy-efficient products and equipment, including electric vehicles and associated EV charging equipment. The scheme, which includes gas vehicles and refuelling equipment, was extended in Budget 2022 to hydrogen-powered vehicles and refuelling equipment. However, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles no longer qualify for ACA support as of 1 January 2022. For cars the accelerated allowance is based on the lower of the actual cost of the vehicle or €24,000. It is not necessary to get prior approval or to apply for this incentive and it is noted during normal self-assessment tax provisions.
Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT) is a tax to be paid when and imported vehicle is registered in the Irish State. It is reduced for electric vehicles and a scheme for VRT relief of up to €5,000 for BEVs will be in operation until the end of 2023. Learn more on revenue.ie.
Benefit -in-kind (BIK) is any non-cash benefit of monetary value that is provided through your employment. For the purpose of the tax system, these benefits are thought of a notional pay and have monetary value and tax is calculated on each perk. There is BIK to be paid on all company cars, but an exception is made for electric vehicles. BEVs qualify for a 0% Benefit-in-Kind rate up to €50,000 without mileage conditions. This will be extended out to 2025 with a tapering effect on the vehicle value. This new measure took effect from January 2023. For BIK purposes, the original market value of an electric vehicle will be reduced by €35,000 for 2023; €20,000 for 2024; and €10,000 for 2025 as part of the Dept of Finance’s announced phasing out of this 0% Benefit-in-kind on Electric Vehicles over the next 4 years.
The Low Emissions Vehicle Toll Incentive (LEVTI) is set to run until June 30th 2023 and allows for reductions of 50% for battery electric vehicles and 25% for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. A further higher incentive rate of 75% and 50% applies for BEVs and PHEVs respectively when traveling off peak on the M50 in Dublin. To avail of discounted toll rates, your EV needs to be registered with participating scheme tag providers, and you must have an electronic toll tag. The toll tags are available from scheme tag providers. There is a cap of €500 per year for private vehicles, and €1,000 for commercial vehicles. Learn more here.
A number of insurance companies have been offering Irish motorists with an EV better rates on their car insurance. The discounts are advertised as anywhere from 15% to 75%, so a chat with your local broker or insurance company may be well worth the time and effort.
At the end of 2022, there were over 67,000 electric cars registered in Ireland. In January 2023 a further 34,000 EVs were registered. As green and electric driving continues to rise and eventually become more usual, we might expect that all of these incentives will disappear. Certainly, the clock is ticking on many of the more lucrative Government grants. If you are considering going electric, now may well be the time. At Sandyford Motor Centre we have a wide selection of electric vehicles to fit the bill and a working knowledge on all the financial inducements from large fuel savings to reduced toll fees.
Call in and see us today!