UK net zero latest: Manufacturers’ association Make UK calls changes ‘a huge setback’

The UK car industry has strongly criticised prime minister Rishi Sunak for considering moving back a ban on new petrol and diesel cars to 2035 from 2030, saying it threatens the UK’s international leadership and the industry’s efforts to pivot to EVs.

“Ending emissions from road transport is the only way you will achieve net zero,” Mike Hawes, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

The delay would cause “confusion” among motorists, many of whom would delay switching to EVs just as carmakers invest billions in new models, he warned.

Lisa Brankin, chair of Ford UK, said the existing 2030 target for cars was a “vital catalyst to accelerate Ford into a cleaner future” as she highlighted the company’s £430mn investment in its UK electrification development and manufacturing facilities.

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