Pictured above:Harley-Davidson goes electric with the Livewire motorcycle
Motorcyclists will be offered up to £1,500 to buy electric motorbikes, under a new government scheme, reports Business Green. Up to £7.5m will be set aside to accelerate the uptake of greener two-wheelers, under the same programme which also offers discounts of up to £5,000 off the cost of an electric car and £8,000 off a zero emissions van.
The initiative has been developed following meetings with bike manufacturers including Suzuki, Harley-Davidson, BMW, Volt and Mahindra. Final details and eligibility have yet to be decided. However, the Department of Transport said the scheme could be up and running by the summer.
Only around 100 electric motorcycles and scooters were sold in the UK last year, typically at a cost of around £2,000 more than standard models. However, they are seen as having the potential to reduce emissions and tackle air pollution, while cutting running costs for owners.
Says Business Minister Matthew Hancock:
“Low emission vehicles are the future and show that we can meet our climate change commitments without giving up our cars or motorbikes. Electric motorcycles and scooters have got fantastic potential and can be a real force for good.”
The UK is investing £500m over the next parliament to encourage low emission vehicles and develop the country as a hub for clean transport technology, which includes electric, hybrid, and hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicles.
Matthew Hancock also revealed £6.6m worth of funding to establish a network of 12 hydrogen refuelling stations, including new stations built in Brentford and Croydon and a new mobile station that will be used across the South of England, as well as upgrades to existing hydrogen demonstrator stations.
Last week we announced that China’s Geely is investing £250m in a new Coventry factory to build zero emission London cabs as part of mayor Boris Johnson’s plans to crack down on the capital’s air pollution. For more information see here.