Belgian EV-prices plunge to grabble in limited Flemish subsidy bag

The Škoda Enyaq 60 GO is the latest of a series of electric vehicles in Belgium that sees its bare price plunge with an attractive €6 310 to get under the €40 000 threshold set by the Flemish government to be eligible for the 5 000 euro premium. But that twenty-million-euro pot will only benefit the 4 000 first-come, and pre-orders are piling up.

It’s too early to tell whether the subsidy pot will be emptied in a few days or months at best, as some dealers already fear, as applying for the government incentive will probably start on January 8th, 2024. The Council of State still has to give the green light, and the decree must first be published officially.

First come, first served

In September, the Flemish regional government announced it would (re-)install a premium for EVs purchased by private persons. There’s a significant restriction, as the purchasing price of the BEV has to be less than €40 000, reducing the choice of electric cars on offer.

One can apply up to 90 days after signing the order at an official dealership, and the premium will be granted according to the first come, first served principle. It amounts to €5 000 in 2024 and will decrease to €4 000 in 2025 and €3 000 in 2026.

For second-hand buys, there will be a premium of €3 000, decreasing to €2 500 in 2025 and €2 000 in 2026. The original list price of the car can’t be higher than €60 000, VAT included in this case.

Dropping prices

One of the more remarkable rules is that discounted cars are also eligible, which several carmakers do to get their slice of the pie. Usually, a car like the popular Škoda Enyaq, even with the small 60 kWh battery and a range of 400 km, would be out of reach, as it started at a minimum of €46 300.

But after cutting its prices for the Volkswagen ID.3 (€39 990) and even a stripped version of the ID.4 (€39 649) and the Cupra Born (€39 024), the Belgian importer of the VW brands, D’Ieteren decided to add the Enyaq a few days before the deadline.

So far, 54 EVs are eligible

So, in Flanders, it becomes a real deal at €34 990 or a hard-to-resist €11 310 less than elsewhere in Belgium. In Brussels and Wallonia, like it or lump it, no premium exists (yet). Škoda isn’t the only one offering a bargain, as the list is growing nearly daily with the choice out of more than 50 BEVs to date, and not surprisingly, 18 of them just between €39 000 and €40 000.

And those are not only Chinese offerings like the BYD Atto 3 and Dolphin, MG4, MG5, Aiways U5, Forthing Evo Electric, Seres, or Maxus Euniq6. The Koreans follow with the Hyundai Kona 48EV and Kia Nero EV, and the Japanese with the Nissan Leaf and Mazda MX30.

Stellantis put its best foot forward with the Opel Astra Electric and Mokka-e, DS 3 E-Tense, Citroën ë-C4 and ë-Berlingo, Peugeot e-2008, Abarth 500e and Fiat 500e and the Jeep Avenger. Renault’s counteroffer includes the Scenic EV, Kangoo E-Tech, ZOE EV50, Mégane EV60, Twingo ZE, and the cheapest of them all, the Dacia Spring 45 at €20 990 or the Spring 60 at €22 690.

In the ‘premium’ league, Volvo joins in with the EX30 (€38 990), BMW with the Mini Cooper E (€34 500) and SE (€38 500), and Mercedes via its joint venture with Smart, with the Smart #1 Pro (€36 495).

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