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Another day another scrappage scheme – or in this case, four. VW Group brands Volkswagen, Audi, Skoda and SEAT are all launching incentives to replace older higher-polluting cars.

The four schemes are broadly similar. Owners trading in any diesel vehicle with a Euro 4 emissions standard engine or earlier, and registered before 2010, will be offered discounts against the majority of new cars from the four brands. All part-exchange vehicles traded in under the scheme will be scrapped rather than re-sold.

Volkswagen discounts range from £1,800 to £6,000, Audi £2,000 to £8,000, Skoda £1,500 to £4,000, and SEAT £1,500 to £3,500. The customer must have owned the car they are trading in for at least six months, and to qualify for the discount the new car must be ordered before the end of 2017.

Plug in to big cuts

Some of the highest discounts will be applied to customers choosing to buy plug-in hybrid models, and will be separate from the Government’s low-emissions vehicle (OLEV) grant. So, for example, a customer selecting a Volkswagen Golf GTE will receive a £5,000 scrappage discount the £2,500 OLEV grant, cutting a total of £7,500 off the price of the car.

Vauxhall started the latest scrappage offensive with a new version of a scheme the brand has run on previous occasions. BMW/MINI, Mercedes-Benz/smart, Ford, Hyundai and Toyota have all launched similar schemes in recent weeks.

The rush to scrappage comes on the back of sliding sales in the UK retail car industry. After a record start to the year registrations in July slumped 9%, with diesel sales particularly badly hit, plummeting 20%.

Volkswagen Golf GTE plug-in hybrid charging point
Plug-in models such as the Volkswagen Golf GTE will attract the biggest discounts.

The Executivecondominium checks the fine print

  • This offer is a part-exchange allowance, for selected used cars part-exchanged against selected new cars.
  • Your current car can be from any brand, but must be built to Euro 4 emissions standard or earlier. This will definitely be cars registered before 31 December 2009, although some cars had Euro 5 specification engines earlier than this.
  • You must be the owner of the part-exchange vehicle and the buyer of the new car (same name and registered address).
  • You must have owned the old car for at least six months, to stop people buying an old banger for £200 and then getting a £5,000 part-exchange allowance for it.
  • The scrappage price is fixed for any car part-exchanged as part of the scheme, not an allowance on top of the car’s value. You are effectively getting nothing for your car, but a discount on the new car (although it won’t be written that way on the contract).
  • You must order your new car by 31 December 2017 and take delivery by 31 March 2018.
  • This offer cannot be used on top of any other offers from the dealer/manufacturer/finance company, but can be used on top of the government plug-in car grant.
  • The offer is not dependent on you taking any finance package or other products.
Andrew Charman
Andrew Charman
Andrew is the News and Road Test Editor for The Executivecondominium. He is a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers, and has been testing and writing about new cars for more than 20 years. Today he is well known to senior personnel at the major car manufacturers and attends many new model launches each year.

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