Currently, Ford plans to go all-electric across its entire European passenger vehicle lineup by 2030 or sooner following the introduction of a host of new EV models, including the recently-revealed Ford Explorer EV. However, while the European Union is currently planning on banning the sale of new ICE vehicles in 2035 – minus some exceptions – the same cannot be said for the UK, which recently exited the EU and is currently debating what its own emissions requirements might look like. Back in June, Tim Slatter, the chairman of Ford of Europe, suggested that the UK should follow EU regulations to make things simpler for everyone involved, and also criticized some recent comments from UK Prime Minster Rishi Sunak, who wants to push the ban back, saying it would “unfairly impact the public.” Now, another Ford executive has come out against this proposed delay.
“Three years ago, the government announced the UK’s transition to electric new car and van sales from 2030. The auto industry is investing to meet that challenge,” said Lisa Brankin, Ford UK Chair. “Ford has announced a global $50 billion commitment to electrification, launching nine electric vehicles by 2025. The range is supported by £430 million invested in Ford’s UK development and manufacturing facilities, with further funding planned for the 2030 timeframe.”
“This is the biggest industry transformation in over a century and the UK 2030 target is a vital catalyst to accelerate Ford into a cleaner future. Our business needs three things from the UK government – ambition, commitment, and consistency. A relaxation of 2030 would undermine all three. We need the policy focus trained on bolstering the EV market in the short term and supporting consumers while headwinds are strong – infrastructure remains immature, tariffs loom, and cost-of-living is high.”
Sunak previous said that the UK will “make progress towards net zero” but “in a proportionate and pragmatic way” that “doesn’t unnecessarily give people more hassle and more costs in their lives. That’s not what I’m interested in and prepared to do.” Sunak added that he remains committed to reaching net zero emissions eventually, but he also believes in exploring other clean energy sources rather than focusing only on electrification, though his opponents – both political and those from the automotive industry – don’t seem to agree.