Today, July 1st sees the start of the new VRT rules – which rewards drivers of environmentally-friendly cars with lower annual tax payments – with the motor industry expecting to see a surge in sales, the Irish Independent reports.

With car sales down in May by 51% on 2007, industry figures believe that businesses and consumers have held off buying cars until the new system came into force – hoping to save money on smaller cars that emit less carbon dioxide.

Alan Nolan, director general of the Society of the Irish Motor Industry, said: “This is good news for consumers, as cars will be cheaper to buy if you make the right choices.

“There’s savings across all ranges including smaller petrol engines, diesels and biofuel cars. We also expect to see the same effect coming across in the used car market.”

These VRT changes arrive after Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI) published a report suggesting that if the currently available models of electric cars replaced similar fuel types, national CO2 emissions could be reduced by 0.35 million tonnes annually.

Dipika Patel

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