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NFDA wins government backing for new EV trust mark scheme

NFDA wins government backing for new EV trust mark scheme

The National Franchised Dealers Association’s (NFDA) new Electric Vehicle Approved (EVA) trust mark scheme has secured government backing.

With the pilot scheme first phase now open to retailers in the first instance to February 2019, the EVA has been endorsed by the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV).

Sue Robinson, NFDA director, said: “It is extremely positive that OLEV has endorsed the pilot phase of NFDA’s new EVA scheme, now open to all retailers.”

The slots for the pilot phase will be allocated on a first come first served basis to ensure a fair geographical representation of the UK. The pilot will be used to establish the scheme and the NFDA will monitor the operation before the official launch to consumers in 2019.

EVA is a set of standards for retail and aftersales, developed by NFDA and endorsed by OLEV and the Energy Saving Trust (EST). It is said to be the only scheme, open to all automotive retailers, which certifies the efforts retailers are making in the electric vehicle sector to meet the ever-changing consumer demand.

Both pure electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid vehicles are experiencing significant growth and a number of manufacturers have ambitious plans for the expansion of both the model range and volume of models sold.

Importantly, said the NFDA, interest from consumers was also expanding rapidly. However, it said, consumers had found buying a plug-in car more complex than purchasing an internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle, due to the additional considerations to be taken into account and possible lifestyle impacts.

Retailers, said the NFDA, had a central role in helping the UK consumer feel confident enough to buy an electric vehicle.

A retailer who has committed significant time and resources to electric vehicles should meet the standards set by EVA and then be able to communicate clearly to consumers, through the EVA trust mark, their expertise in the sector.

The EVA status is awarded to individual dealership locations and not to dealer groups. Once a dealer group decides which site(s) they wish to be EVA members, NFDA will arrange for an audit to occur at those locations. The audit will be performed by the EST and will result in either a pass or referral. NFDA is the awarding body and on receipt of a successful audit report will grant the dealership site EVA membership.

Ms Robinson said: “Cooperation between government and industry is vital for the UK to be at the forefront of the latest developments in the electric vehicles sector, while meeting emission targets and satisfying consumer demand. NFDA looks forward to working with OLEV and the EST to give automotive retailers the opportunity to show their excellence in electric vehicle retail.”