Are you considering buying an electric car in France? Now might be a good time

Are you considering buying an electric car in France?  Now might be a good time

If you’re considering buying an electric car in France, it’s best to do so in the coming months, before government plans to reduce available financial support take effect.

Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire has said France’s projet de loi de finance 2023 still includes aid for people buying electric cars that cost less than €47,000.

However, this bonus ecology – which currently offers grants worth 27% of the cost of the vehicle, up to €6,000 – will be reduced to a maximum of €5,000 in 2023.

The exact date of the amendment has not yet been confirmed, as the budget has not yet been legitimized.

Read more: What support is there for electric cars and charging stations in France?

Read more: Buying an electric car: what French tools are available to help?

Moreover, Mr Le Maire does not rule out introducing a condition that cars eligible for these subsidies are produced on European – or even French – soil.

“Do we need the? bonus ecology to France or Europe? We need to think about that,” he said when the budget law was announced on September 26.

Read more: Healthcare, climate, cigarettes: France announces its 2023 budget

This would mean that models such as the electric Toyota Yaris, which are produced in Onnaing (Nord), the Opel Mokka-e, which is produced in Poissy (Yvelines) and Peugeot electric cars, which are assembled in Mulhouse (Haut-Rhin), get priority. for the subsidy.

Models such as the Tesla Model Y Propulsion and the Smart #1 – both manufactured in China – would not qualify.

Government Lease Plan

In total, the 2023 budget includes €1.3 billion in funding to boost the use of electric cars, including plans for a lease arrangement that will make a total of 100,000 vehicles available for long-term rental at a cost of €100 per month.

This initiative will mainly target lower-income households and certain professions, such as nurses.

The scheme includes vehicles such as the MD4 Base, which is currently available for €168.23 per month, and the electric Renault Twingo, which currently costs €129 per month. For those who qualify for the lease program, the difference in costs will be covered by the state.

It is scheduled to launch in 2023, with €30 million allocated to the introduction of 10,000 cars to the market for lease that year.

More money will then be allocated to the scheme in 2024 and 2025.

Read more: France’s electric car for €100/month: who is eligible?

Xavier Horent, deputy general of motorists’ association Mobilians, said: car info“Leaving no one on the side of the transportation transition is essential if we are to succeed in meeting the environmental challenge that our society collectively faces.

“But it’s clear that even today, electric vehicles are not within reach for certain income earners.

“Yes, we need to help those of our compatriots who can’t afford an electric car financially, because it seems that in the long term our politicians hope that these vehicles will be the only ones allowed access to urban centers.”

The government’s 2023 budget still needs to be approved by parliament before it becomes law.

Prime à la conversion

Although the government plans to reduce the amount of money sent through the bonus ecology schedule, it will be prime à la conversion.

This grant is available to those who are replacing an older, more polluting vehicle with an electric car.

It is means-tested and only applies to petrol vehicles registered before 2006 and diesel vehicles registered before 2011.

Eligible persons can receive up to € 2,500 when purchasing an electric car or plug-in hybrid vehicle that can drive 50 km on electricity.

For other hybrids and vehicles with a Crit’Air rating of 1 – meaning they are not very polluting – the maximum amount is €1,500.

These amounts are doubled for people who live more than 30 km from work or drive a lot for work, and for people with the lowest incomes.

Both bonus ecology and the prime à la conversion can be deducted from the price you pay if the dealer agrees. Otherwise, you will need to apply online after purchase to get the money back.

Interest-free loans

Even if you miss the higher bonus ecology maximum subsidy, from 1 January 2023 you may be able to take advantage of an interest-free government loan to help with the purchase of an electric or hybrid car.

For a car that costs up to €45,000 – or €60,000 for a van – this will rise to €30,000, to be paid back in seven years.

Loans will only be available to people in areas that consistently exceed allowable pollution level thresholds, and areas where a low-emission zone (zone à faibles emissions (ZFE)) must be introduced from January 1.

Read more: France offers €30,000 loans to buy hybrid or electric vehicles

Only small businesses with fewer than 10 employees and a turnover of less than €2 million, and individuals of whom: income tax de référence taxable income is less than € 14,000 per year is eligible.

With car lease schemes, the maximum loan amount is reduced to € 10,000 and the repayment term is the same as that of the lease contract.

The interest-free loan scheme will be tried out for two years.

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