With a change of government comes a change of policies, and the changing of the guard in Canberra could see Australia’s Government getting serious about an electric vehicle (EV) policy.
Labor’s Powering Australia Plan has an ambitious target of putting 3.8 million EVs on our roads by 2030.
It wants to achieve that by setting targets for government fleets, removing import and fringe benefits taxes, developing charging infrastructure, and boosting charging options by reviewing building codes.
With that in place the Government predicts that 89 per cent of new cars and 15 per cent of all cars on the road will be electric by 2030.
The policy is good news for car buyers, and fleet owners. Eliminating the 5 per cent import tariff could cut more than $2,000 from the price of a sub-$50,000 electric vehicle.
Businesses should benefit by avoiding the 47 per cent FBT on vehicles under $79,659, while also gaining from the lower servicing and maintenance costs of electric vehicles. Labor’s modelling predicts FBT savings could be $8,700 on a $50,000 model, such as a Nissan Leaf, $10,600 on a $60,000 model, such as a Hyundai Kona, and $12,000 on a $70,000 model, such as the Tesla Model 3.
And of course, those soaring fuel prices will also be a thing of the past for businesses running EVs. That should widen the smile on a lot of business owners’ faces. When the Government’s electric fleet vehicles eventually hit the market and join private fleet EVs it can only mean good news for the used EV market, increasing supply and choice, while pushing down prices.
So, is it all pedal to the metal and full speed ahead for EVs in Australia? Well not quite, because there’s still one factor putting a rather big brake on sales right now, and that is supply.
If you’re waiting for a new EV right now you could be waiting for quite a while – up to 12 months for a Tesla Model 3, and probably longer for a Polestar, or electric Volvo.
The latest tiny batch of Hyundai’s award-winning Ioniq 5 sold out as soon as they became available.
Covid-19, the war in Ukraine, and the chronic global shortage of silicone chips are all playing a role in driving this shortage, but EV website ‘The Driven’ also blames the absence of vehicle emission standards that are in line with overseas markets.
It claims that Australia’s absence of emission standards simply cause carmakers to send zero-emission EVs to other countries with better standards, rather than to Australia.
We’ll just have to wait and see how that pans out with the new Government in charge in Canberra.
Regardless, it’s time to look on the bright side. Australia’s EV policy is about to start moving forward, and that must be good for vehicle owners and businesses.