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29 May

VW to launch affordable EVs in Europe by 2027

Credit: Sport car hub /

Volkswagen Group (VW) plans to launch affordable electric vehicles (EVs) in Europe by 2027. The company aims to offer compact, budget-friendly EVs priced around €20,000, fulfilling its promise of making e-mobility accessible to all. This initiative aligns with Volkswagen’s commitment to affordable mobility and social responsibility. 

CEO Oliver Blume said: "We’re launching a project focused on entry-level electric mobility from Europe for Europe, reinforcing our commitment to Europe as an industrial hub and addressing the needs of European customers.” 

Thomas Schäfer, CEO of the Volkswagen brand and head of the Brand Group Core, highlighted the importance of this development: “For electromobility to become widespread, we need attractive entry-level vehicles. Despite rising costs, our affordable electric vehicles will set new standards in technology, design, quality, and customer experience.” 

VW plans to localise production heavily in Europe, benefiting the region as an industrial location and reducing CO2 emissions by minimising long transport routes for components. 

30 May

AFP unveils updated tax and regulation manifesto ahead of UK election

The Association of Fleet Professionals (AFP) has released an updated Tax and Regulation Manifesto ahead of the UK election on 4 July. 

First introduced in 2021 and revised early last year, the manifesto has expanded from 13 to 24 points, reflecting the increasing complexity of issues faced by the fleet industry. The AFP's updated manifesto includes proposals to clarify regulations for 4.25t electric vans, extend benefit-in-kind taxation tables to 2030, and cancel plans to introduce Vehicle Excise Duty on electric vans from April 2025. 

It also calls for fiscal measures to enhance the attractiveness of electric vehicles (EVs) in the used market, chargepoint regulation and labelling for EVs, among others. 

AFP chairman Paul Hollick said: “Since the pandemic, the problems that fleets are facing seem to have multiplied, largely as we grapple with the implications of electrification and other zero-emissions initiatives. Whoever wins power, we hope to work with them to help resolve these many issues.”  

24 May

ZEV mandate driving down prices of new electric vehicles

The UK’s Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) mandate has led to a reduction in the prices of new electric vehicles (EVs), with discounts being offered on three-quarters of new models. This initiative aims to ensure that 22% of the UK vehicle registrations are electric to avoid heavy financial penalties for manufacturers. 

Auto Trader‘s Road to 2035 Report highlights the effects of the ZEV mandate, which was implemented despite the postponement of the sales ban to 2035. The report indicates that 70% of new electric models are now advertised at lower average prices, as the automotive industry works to stimulate demand to meet the mandate’s requirements.  

Although new electric car sales have risen, this growth is primarily attributed to the fleet and business sector. Private car buyers seem less engaged, with EVs making up less than one in ten new cars sold to this group. 

Interest peaked in June 2022, with EVs constituting 36% of advert views on Auto Trader but has since stabilised at around 14%.

24 May

FCA approves resumption of GAP insurance sales

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has authorised several firms to restart selling Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP) insurance following regulatory action aimed at enhancing fair value for customers. 

To resume sales, firms had to demonstrate that their GAP insurance products comply with FCA rules and provide fair value to customers. This regulatory intervention has resulted in significantly lower commission levels for those selling GAP insurance, thereby improving the value for customers. 

According to the FCA’s 2022 value measures data, there were over 2.4 million GAP policies in force. However, only 6% of the premiums paid by customers were paid out in claims, with some firms paying up to 70% of the insurance premium value in commissions to parties involved in selling GAP insurance. 

The FCA has now given the green light for the following firms to recommence selling GAP insurance: Fortegra Europe Insurance Company Ltd; Motors Insurance Company Ltd; Amtrust Europe Ltd; and Financial & Legal Insurance Company Limited.  

22 May

UK online car retailer Cazoo enters administration

UK-based online car retailer Cazoo has entered administration as its parent company prepares for voluntary liquidation.  The London-based company, listed on the New York Stock Exchange, appointed Teneo Financial Advisory’s David Soden and Matthew Mawhinney as joint administrators.   

Cazoo Ltd, Cazoo Holdings Limited, and Cazoo Properties Limited are now in administration while Cazoo Group is set to liquidate. Founded in 2018 by Alex Chesterman, Cazoo was once valued at over £5bn. Earlier this month, the company filed notices to appoint administrators for its subsidiaries, providing a grace period to seek a rescue deal.   

Cazoo has been reducing its used car inventory, settling stocking loans, and cutting staff to stabilise its finances, including terminating leases, selling customer service centres, and disposing of non-essential assets.  

In March, Cazoo announced a strategic shift towards a pure-play automotive marketplace business model. The administration filing is seen as the next step in restructuring, aimed at optimising returns to creditors.