If you're driving an older car, and especially a diesel, then you could receive incentives of between £2000 and £7000 by trading it in for a new, more efficient car.
Car makers including Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Mini and Renault have all launched scrappage schemes. The new plans are designed to reduce the pollution caused by diesel cars, as well as increasing the uptake of low-emissions cars in the UK. Despite the sales of such cars rising by more than 30% over the past year, they still account for just 4.3% of the total market.
To qualify for Alfa Romeo's scheme, your car must have been registered before 31 December 2009 and therefore complies to Euro 1-4 standards. Euro standards set the limits for emissions from new cars, with the first, Euro 1, being introduced in 1992. Owners can check if their car qualifies here.
Alfa Romeo is offering up to £5300 off the price of a Giulietta family hatchback and up to £2500 off the price of a Mito small car. The Giulia saloon is discounted by £3250. In each case, the entry-level versions of those cars are excluded from the scheme; in the case of the Giulia, the sporty Quadrifoglio is also excluded. The initiative runs until 30 September and is in place of any other discounts being offered by dealers.
Audi's scrappage scheme covers diesel cars registered before 31 December 2009 and can net you an average saving of £2500 on a new car. In some cases, that discount can be teamed with the Government's electric vehicle grant, meaning your total saving could rise to as much as £7500.
Here's the full list of Audi's discounted models and their savings:
- Audi A1 – £2800
- Audi A1 Sportback – £2800
- Audi A3 – £4000
- Audi A3 Sportback – £4000
- Audi A3 Sportback e-tron – £5000
- Audi A3 Saloon – £4000
- Audi A3 Cabriolet – £4000
- Audi A4 Saloon – £6000
- Audi A4 Avant – £6000
- Audi A4 Allroad – £6000
- Audi A5 Sportback – £6000
- Audi A5 Coupé – £6000
- Audi A5 Cabriolet – £6000
- Audi A6 Avant – £7000
- Audi A6 Allroad – £7000
- Audi A7 Sportback – £7000
- Audi TT Coupé – £4000
- Audi TT Roadster – £4000
- Audi Q2 – £2000
- Audi Q3 – £4000
- Audi Q5 – £4000
- Audi Q7 e-tron – £8000
Audi's offer runs until the end of this year.
To qualify for BMW's incentive, owners must trade in diesel cars that comply with Euro 4 emissions standards or older – with the cut-off date being September 2009.
Buyers will be offered up to £2000 to trade in their cars – on top of the vehicle's residual value, as determined by used car experts CAP.
The value of the incentive must be put towards buying a new BMW or Mini. In particular, it must be either a BMW i3, a plug-in hybrid car (such as the BMW 3 Series, 330e or the Mini Countryman S E All4) or a car that complies with the most modern Euro 6 emissions limits, with CO2 emissions of less than 130g/km.
This means owners will be able to choose from the majority of BMW's range, including multiple versions of the 5 Series luxury saloon, which is our Car of the Year for 2017. Some of the brand's larger SUVs do not qualify, though. BMW says that 80% of its range qualifies for the discount, alongside 70% of Mini models.
BMW hasn't specified what it will do with the cars that owners trade in. The oldest models will likely be scrapped, although BMW is keen not to call this offer a 'scrappage scheme', with others sold on as used vehicles.
This initiative is especially good news if you're buying a plug-in hybrid or electric car, because BMW's incentive is on top of the Government's existing electric vehicle grant, which takes a maximum of £4500 off your purchase price. Therefore, if you trade in an older car and receive £2000 from BMW, plus a further £4500 from the Government, you can put £6500 towards the cost of a new i3 – meaning the £33,070 price tag will actually reduce to £26,570, or even less depending on the trade-in value of your car. What Car?'s Target Price on the i3 is currently £28,570.
BMW's incentive is also in addition to its current discounts and offers, and could prove especially useful if buying on finance, where the £2000 incentive could be used to top up the deposit on a PCP offer. BMW says this means drivers could come away with a new BMW or Mini for £155 or £130 per month respectively.
BMW's scheme will initially run until the end of this year.
Trade in your older car for a new Dacia and you'll receive a discount of up to £1000 on a Duster small SUV. Like most of the other schemes mentioned here, to qualify your car must have been registered before 31 December 2009. All vehicles traded in under the scheme will be scrapped.
When combined with Dacia's finance deposit contribution, customers buying on a PCP finance deal will actually receive up to £2250 towards the cost of their new car. This offer excludes the most basic Access versions of the Duster, and ends at the end of the year.
Fiat and Abarth
Fiat's scheme covers cars registered before 31 December 2009 and is in place of any other discount you might otherwise receive.
The full list of discounted Fiat vehicles and their saving is below:
- Fiat 500 (Pop models only) – up to £2125
- Fiat 500X – £2500
- Fiat 500L – up to £3500
- Fiat Panda (all models excluding Pop versions) – £2000
- Fiat Tipo – up to £1500
- Fiat Punto – £3500
- Fiat 124 Spider – £3000
- Abarth Spider – up to £3000
- Abarth 595 – £1095
The Jeep Renegade small SUV is also discounted by £3500.
Like most of the other schemes listed here, Ford's offer covers cars that comply to Euro 4 emissions standards or earlier, meaning any petrol or diesel car registered up to 31 December 2009 is eligible.
To qualify, drivers must have owned their cars for at least 90 days and the offer is effective on cars sold from 1 September. Like other schemes mentioned here, Ford's offer will run until the end of this year. Ford's scrappage offer is on top of its regular discounts, so a £4000 discount on the Ford Kuga, for example, is actually made up of a £2000 scrappage discount on top of the £2000 discount customers would expect to receive normally.
This is good news if your car is worth less than £2000, but could potentially leave customers out of pocket if their car is worth more than that figure. Other schemes, such as the one offered by Mercedes-Benz, guarantees additional compensation for owners based on the value of their car if it is scrapped.
The highest savings, including that headline-grabbing £7000 discount figure, are only available on Ford's commercial vehicle range, but the company's passenger cars receive discounts of up to £4950. Ford has pledged to scrap all the cars that are traded in under this scheme.
Ford's discounted vehicles and their savings are:
- New Ford Fiesta – £2000
- Ford B-Max (excluding Zetec models) – £3500
- Ford Focus – £4950
- Ford C-Max – £4500
- Ford Kuga – £4500
- Ford Transit Courier – £3650
- Ford Transit Connect (excluding Base models) – £5000
- Ford Transit Custom – £5500
- Ford Transit – £7000
Starting from this month, buyers can get up to £5000 off a new Hyundai when they trade in their older petrol or diesel car. To qualify, cars must have been registered before 31 December 2009, meaning they conform to Euro 1-4 standards.
The most polluting vehicles – those that comply with Euro 1-3 standards – will be scrapped under Hyundai's scheme, while owners of Euro 4 cars can trade in their cars instead, receiving a residual value calculated by used car experts CAP.
Buyers wishing to take out finance will also be supported with 2.9% APR from Hyundai Finance. Hyundai's discounts are in lieu of any other offer and will run until the end of this year.
The full list of Hyundai discounts is below:
- Hyundai i10 1.0 S – £1545
- Hyundai i10 all other derivatives – £1500
- Hyundai i20 1.2 S – £2110
- Hyundai i20 all other derivatives – £2000
- Hyundai i30 – £4000
- Hyundai i40 – £3000
- Hyundai ix20 – £2000
- Hyundai Tucson – £3500
- Hyundai Santa Fe – £5000
- Hyundai Ioniq hybrid - £2000
To qualify for Mazda's scheme, your petrol or diesel car must have been registered before 31st December 2009. When you trade it in, you'll be given up to £5000 off the price of a new Mazda, whether that's on a cash or PCP finance deal.
The full list of discounted Mazda vehicles is below:
- Mazda 2 – £2500 discount
- Mazda 3 – Up to £5000 discount depending on model
- Mazda 6 – Up to £5000 discount depending on model
- Mazda CX-3 – £3000
Discounted Mini models include the Mini three and five-door hatchbacks, the Clubman estate, the Mini Convertible and the Countryman small SUV. Like parent company BMW's scheme, to qualify for Mini's discounts you'll need to own a diesel car registered before September 2009.
Mini will give you £2000 towards the cost of your new car, meaning that buyers could drive away a new Mini for less than £130 per month.
Like BMW, Mercedes-Benz is offering owners of older diesels (again, up to and including Euro 4 models) up to £2000 if they trade in their car. If you also opt for a Smart Electric Drive car, that bonus rises to £3000.
Cars being traded in can be from any brand, but must have been owned by the current driver for at least six months.
Drivers can choose from any Mercedes diesel car complying with the latest Euro 6 standards, as well as any plug-in hybrid or the aforementioned electric Smart models – which come in Smart Fortwo and Forfour forms. This incentive is in addition to the Government's own subsidy for electric vehicles.
Mercedes will give owners of cars that meet Euro 3 standards (typically those built before 2001) additional compensation from their cars being scrapped, with the amount determined using data from CAP.
Mercedes will offer its incentive until the end of 2017.
More information can be found on the Mercedes website.
Nissan's offer covers cars registered before 31 December 2009 and runs until the end of September. Owners trading in their older vehicles will receive up to £5000 in discounts on top of the trade-in value of their car. Nissan is placing a particular emphasis on the Leaf electric car, saying that owners could drive away a used Leaf for less than £100 per month using the scheme.
The full range of Nissan's discounted cars and their savings is below:
- Nissan Micra – up to £3600
- Nissan Juke – up to £4500
- Nissan Qashqai – up to £3500 (and up to £4500 on the old Qashqai)
- Nissan X-Trail – up to £4000 (and up to £500 on the old X-Trail)
- Used Nissan Leaf – up to £2000
To qualify for Renault's scheme, you car must have been registered before 31 December 2009, meaning it will conform to Euro 1-4 standards. Any vehicle traded in using the scheme will be scrapped and owners will receive £2000 towards the cost of a new Renault car or van. That £2000 saving is combined with the discount customers could usually expect to receive, meaning that, in some cases, you can get up to £7000 off the price of a new Renault.
The full list of discounted Renault cars and their savings is below:
- Renault Clio – £4250
- Renault Captur – £4200
- Renault Megane – £4000
- Renault Scenic and Grand Scenic – £4000
- Renault Kadjar – £5200
- Renault Kangoo van – £3000
- Renault Trafic van – £5500
- Renault Master van – £7000
To qualify for Seat's discount scheme, your car must have been registered before 31 December 2009 and be a diesel. Like many other car makers, Seat will scrap your car rather than sell it on.
Here's the full list of discounted Seat cars and their savings:
Like most of the other schemes, to qualify for Skoda's discounts your diesel car must have been registered by 31 December 2009. The offer runs until the end of the year and can net you a saving of up to £4000 on a new car. Cars traded in using Skoda's scheme will be scrapped. Skoda's offer can't be used in conjunction with any other discounts.
The full list of discounted Skoda vehicles and their savings is below:
- Skoda Citigo – £1500
- Skoda Fabia – £2500
- Skoda Rapid and Rapid Spaceback – £3000
- Skoda Octavia – £3500
- Skoda Superb – £4000
- Skoda Yeti – £3500
Suzuki's offer only lasts until the end of this month, and gets you a discount of up to £2000 on a new Suzuki, provided that you trade in a petrol, diesel or hybrid vehicle registered before the end of 2009. Any vehicle which is traded in will be scrapped.
Here's the full list of discounted Suzuki models:
- Suzuki Celerio (SZ3 and SZ4 models only) – £1000 discount
- Suzuki Ignis (SZ-T and SZ5 models only) – £1000
- Suzuki Jimny (SZ4 models only) – £1000
- Suzuki Baleno (SZ-T and SZ5 models only) – £2000
- Suzuki SX4 S-Cross (SZ-T and SZ5 models only) – £2000
- Suzuki Swift (SZ-T and SZ-5 models only) – £2000
- Suzuki Vitara (SZ-T and SZ5 models only) – £2000
Toyota's scheme can save you up to £4000 on a new car. To qualify, your car must be more than seven years old (so cars registered before 2010 are eligible). Any cars traded in under the scheme will be scrapped.
The initiative runs until the end of the year and covers almost the entire Toyota range. The full list of discounted cars and their savings is below:
- Toyota Aygo – £2000
- Toyota Yaris – £2500
- Toyota Auris – £3500
- Toyota Verso – £3500
- Toyota RAV4 – £3500
- Toyota C-HR – £1000
- Toyota Avensis – £3500
- Toyota Prius – £2000
- Toyota GT86 – £2000
- Toyota Land Cruiser – £4000
- Toyota Hilux – £2000
- Toyota Proace – £2000
Vehicles traded in must be eligible to be scrapped. Vauxhall hasn't put an end date on the offer, although it will likely run until the end of this year.
Again, Volkswagen's scheme covers any diesel car registered before 31 December 2009 and can get you a discount of up to £6000 on a new car. Like most of the schemes listed here, the offer will run until the end of this year. Again, some of Volkswagen's discounted cars also qualify for the Government's electric vehicle grant, potentially increasing your saving.
The full list of Volkswagen's discounted cars and their savings is below:
- VW Up – £1500
- VW e-Up – £3300
- VW Polo – £2800
- VW Golf, Golf SV and Golf Estate – £4000
- VW Golf GTE – £5000
- VW e-Golf – £5500
- VW Touran – £4000
- VW Tiguan – £4000
- VW Beetle – £4000
- VW Jetta – £4000
- VW Scirocco – £5000
- VW Passat – £5000
- VW Passat GTE – £6000
- VW Arteon – £5000
- VW Sharan – £6000
How to get the best deal for your car
These trade-in offers can look tempting, especially if you currently own an older diesel car, but it's still important to check what other deals and offers are available. Many schemes mentioned above are still offering regular discounts on top of their trade-in incentives, so it's worth haggling at the dealer.
It's also worth knowing how much your current car is worth so you can be sure you're getting a fair price. You can use What Car?'s free valuation tool to get a private, trade-in and dealer price for your car, provided it was registered before 1998. We also offer advice on how to get the best price for your car.
Remember, too, that What Car?'s Target Price – which is the most we think you should pay for a new car – can often net you more than £2000 in savings on your next car. Plus, our new car buyer marketplace offers deals on thousands of new cars at Target Price or below.
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