£25m R&D funding for green vehicle production

Business Secretary Vince Cable announced an additional £10m of funding for the production of environmentally friendly vehicles, after pledging £15m for the same cause in October.

The Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) decided to channel the funding available to it through the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) – £65m of R&D funding will be available to UK businesses in the four years to March 2015.

The £25m that has already been pledged this year is to be given to businesses through an R&D competition managed by the TSB in collaboration with OLEV, which will provide £19m of the funding.

The funding programme works in tandem with government which has pledged to match business investments. It is predicted that this support will result in R&D development projects for low carbon vehicles topping £50m.

Transport Minister, Norman Baker, argued that presentation of the UK as an attractive location for investment from global vehicle manufacturers depended on “strengthening [the UK’s] capabilities,” and “adopting new technologies.”

He added that: “Speeding up the commercialisation of low carbon vehicle technologies will contribute to achieving UK and EU climate change targets, help grow the economy, create high value jobs and provide significant global market opportunities for UK-based companies.

Iain Gray, chief executive of the TSB said the funding demonstrates the “recognition and validation of the important role we are playing co-ordinating low carbon vehicle innovation in the UK, from initial strategic academic research through to industry-led research, development and demonstration.”