Operation Gear Change can lead the way to new government subsidies on electric bikes, allowing Seniors in 2023 to receive a grant or voucher toward the cost of the purchase.
The government unveiled “Gear Change,” a “Bold Vision for Cycling and Walking,” in July 2020. They unveiled a new £2 billion financing package including a £175 million fund for local councils to help make England a great cycling country by creating safer places and networks for individuals wishing to switch from driving to cycling in an effort to significantly increase the adoption rates of cycling.
Additionally, there are definite indications that the government may issue grants or subsidies for eBikes. This is good news for everyone as eBikes are now the only electric or sustainable mode of transportation for which grants and subsidies are not already in place, unlike for electric cars, motorcycles, and trucks.
The standard “Cycle to Work” programs are still available, and they continue to be very well-liked, particularly in the last year. They enable workers to forgo a portion of their pre-tax income in order to save as much as 40% off the cost of a new bike. Although this a far cry away from actually allowing everybody to benefit from joining the ebike culture. Keep on reading to discover more information on what the government is doing financially to incentivise you to purchase a new electric bike.
Although there is very little official information available and the situation with the coronavirus will undoubtedly have an impact on anything beyond initial talk and research, the government’s plan is to set up trial schemes in some UK cities and towns before the end of the fiscal year, which sets the new deadline as March 2023. It’s important to keep in mind that similar proposals have been proposed in the past with little success.
With people “locked up” in their homes and only one form of exercise permitted per day during the first of the UK’s Coronavirus lockdowns, eBikes were a naturally simple way for those who weren’t used to daily exercise to get outside and enjoy the weather while improving their fitness at a pace that scales with them. You grow fitter the more you ride.
Aside from price, one of the main obstacles to the adoption of eBikes (or any bike) is the perception of conflict or danger from car users on UK roads for individuals travelling on two wheels. The government will no longer subsidize bike route ideas for straightforward “painted lines and symbols” routes or those where pedestrians and bicycles are compelled to share the same space, according to the new plans.
Only local governments that recognize bicycles as a distinct vehicle class and provide a physical barrier between motor vehicle users, cyclists, and pedestrians will be given financing approval. This step will eventually put us closer to our European counterparts, where up to 40% of travel is on two wheels.
While they’re committing to “find cities and towns across the UK to install at first hundreds, then thousands of miles of main road cycle tracks,” they mention that cycling increased by 55% after the installation of a protected cycle track on London’s Blackfriars Bridge. This is despite the possibility of new Government eBike grants currently taking a backseat.
Government grants and subsidies for ebikes are always welcome. Although it’s great news when eBike adoption rates rise, the timing might have been better. It has been reported that some dealers have seen a decline in orders or have run with consumers who are hesitant to buy a bike right away only to find out they could have gotten it cheaper if they had waited.
Unfortunately, since there is now little stock available, it is doubtful that you will be able to purchase an eBike from the 2022 model year with the support of a government grant or subsidy. Though this sounds like negative news, there is some positive information here. This is that the government is taking this green method of transport seriously and instead of being on the margin of policy, it is starting to be front and centre for the first time in years.
In Spring 2022, Cycling UK was selected to lead a consortium of partners to deliver the national e-cycle support programme. This includes:
short-term opportunities to try e-cycles schemes: offering people a chance to ride in a relaxed and pleasant environment
longer-term loans of e-cycles: encouraging people to see how they can be used in their daily routine
the provision of e-cycles to help people access opportunities for employment and skills
The programme’s first pilot scheme has launched since in Greater Manchester.