Motor Vehicles: Exhaust Emissions

Transport written question – answered on 4th July 2012.

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Photo of Robert Buckland Robert Buckland Conservative, South Swindon

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many low-carbon vehicles are registered (a) nationally and (b) in Swindon.

Photo of Mike Penning Mike Penning The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport

The Department for Transport does not have a definition of ‘low-carbon’ vehicles. Most cars first registered after March 2001 have been taxed on the basis of CO2 emissions. Of the 28.58 million cars licensed in Great Britain on the 31 March 2012, 22.86 million of the registrations include CO2 emission data and of these, 162,802 were in the band A, the lowest band for emissions with emissions of 100 g CO2 per km or lower. This band includes pure electric cars with no tailpipe CO2 emissions. A table containing the complete breakdown of all licensed cars in Great Britain by the vehicle excise duty (VED) band at end of each year is available in table VEH0206 at:

Information on the CO2 emissions for other vehicles is not held on the DVLA vehicle database. All pure electric vehicles will have zero tailpipe CO2 emissions so would also be classified as low-carbon.

The following table provides figures for the total number of band A cars (split into electric and non-electric) and other electric vehicles licensed in (a) Great Britain and (b) Swindon borough council on the 31 March 2012.

Body type Great Britain Swindon borough council
Cars—electric 2,899 67
Cars—non-electric Band A 159,903 2,166
Buses and coaches—electric 82 0
Heavy goods vehicles—electric 878 0
Light goods vehicles—electric 3,740 22
Motorcycles, scooters and mopeds—electric 1,377 5
Others(1)—electric 58,851 198
Cars - total electric and non-electric Band A 162,802 2,233
Total ‘low-carbon’ vehicles 227,730 2,458
(1) The ‘other’ vehicles are mostly registered mobility scooters and milk floats but the category does include some fork lifts, tractors and other commercial vehicles.

The Department has a definition of ‘ultra-low emission vehicles’ which is any vehicle with a pure electric powertrain or tailpipe emissions of 75 g/km of CO2 or under.

Statistics on the number of first registrations under this definition are published monthly in table VEH0170 at:

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