Government cash for the scrappage scheme could run out four months ahead of its planned end date if the current rate of orders through the scheme continues.
Almost 30,000 cars have been delivered under the scheme since it started in May, where buyers can get a £2000 discount off a new car when they scrap their 10-year-old car. £1000 of the discount comes from the Government, with the remainder from the car manufacturer.
The scheme is due to last until the end of February 2010, or until the £300 million Government funding – enough to scrap 300,000 vehicles - has been used up.
A spokesman for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills said: 'If it continues at the rate that it is being taken up, it is very likely that the scheme will end before the start of March.
'At the current rate of 10,000 orders a week, the scheme could end in October.'
What happens when the scheme runs out?
Historically, August is a quiet time for selling cars, as buyers tend to wait a few weeks until the new registration plate arrives in September, so the expectation is that the rate of take-up in the scheme will slow over the summer months.
If the cash does run out in the autumn, the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) says it's still too early to discuss the next step.
'We've still got two to three months to gauge how the scheme is going,' said a SMMT spokesman.
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