France to Launch €100/month EV Leasing Scheme for EU-Made Cars
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A €100/month electric vehicle (EV) leasing scheme is to be introduced in France from November as part of the country’s climate action strategy, French President Emmanuel Macron announced, though only EU-made cars will be eligible.
Macron said he wants to “give people access to electric cars made in Europe.” This is a measure to protect French carmakers from competition from Chinese brands, which have been gaining significant market share in the EU in recent years.
The new EV leasing scheme is part of a broader government strategy to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030. France has also committed to producing over one million EVs by the end of Macron’s term in office in 2027.
The scheme is expected to begin with a few tens of thousands of cars in 2024, but it is expected to grow in size and scope in future years. To be eligible for the scheme, cars must also comply with France’s revisited “green bonus” rules, which provide cash incentives to first-time EV buyers if overall car production emissions remain under a certain threshold.
The new EV leasing scheme is part of a “social ecology plan,” to make EU-made EVs cheaper, French Transport Minister Clément Beaune told public radio broadcaster France inter on Tuesday, whilst at the same time reinforcing “ecological sovereignty.”
According to the consultancy Ptolemus Consulting Group, Chinese EV prices in China dropped by around 50% between 2015 and 2022, from €67,000 to €32,000. European EV prices, on the other hand, went up 17% in the same period, from just under €49,000 to over €55,000, putting them out of reach of many ordinary Europeans.
In practice, carmakers MG, Dacia and Fiat, which all have under €100/month leasing offers in France, will be left out of this scheme as their fleet is China-made, expert news outlet Numerama found.
The new EV leasing scheme is a bold move to make electric cars more affordable and accessible to poorer households. It is also a measure to protect French carmakers from competition from Chinese brands. However, some critics have argued that the scheme is discriminatory and that it could have unintended consequences, such as leading to a rise in used car prices.
It remains to be seen how the new EV leasing scheme will be implemented and how it will be received by the public. However, it is clear that the French government is serious about promoting electric vehicles and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.