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'Far less efficient than they claim': Hybrid vehicles risk ruining UK chances of net zero


Over the last week, Glasgow has been home to COP26, the global climate change conference, with Governments and organisations looking to reach a more sustainable way of living. With the UK Government’s lofty goals of becoming net zero by 2050, they have implemented a number of restrictions on cars to help reach that target.

He said: “I think the hybrids issue is an interesting one because they are a step in the right direction in the sense that they are less carbon intensive than a full petrol or diesel car.

“The risk is that you see investments and jobs going into making hybrids that companies build up their production and assembly around selling hybrids and that is only a stopgap.

“We know they’re not compatible with the net zero commitment that countries have been making. 

“We now know that more than half of the world’s GDP is under a net zero target which is great for the climate but it’s really bad if your business model centres around hybrids as the long-term future for your company.

“The service charges can also be really expensive because you’ve got to service two drive trains and the wear and tear can be much higher because you’re pulling all that extra weight.”

It is estimated that the UK requires between 230,000 and 280,000 public charging devices by 2035 to meet the demand.

With the future ban of the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles, there may be a larger market for used cars, including hybrids.

The average lifespan of a car in the UK is 14 years, and many will try and get the most out of their car before buying a new model.

Mr Nelmes, continued saying: “The decline in numbers of new cars coming out might mean that we see more used cars on the market.

“If there aren’t those new cars to buy, people will just make their cars last longer.

“And so if we see constraints on the supply of new cars, then that could see hybrids lingering around on the road and polluting for a lot longer.

“What it comes down to is a question for car manufacturers. If you’ve got a supply of chips that goes in electric cars, hybrids and conventional cars, which of those production lines do you prioritise? 

“We’d obviously encourage every car manufacturer to prioritise the electric because it makes financial sense.”

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