Volkswagen Scrappage Scheme. Ripping Us Off Again?

Money Saver PeteMoney Warnings2 Comments

volkswagen scrappage scheme
Volkswagen Scrappage Scheme

The Volkswagen Group has announced the introduction of a scrappage scheme across their range of cars worth up to £8000. But find out why they could be pulling the wool over our eyes. Again.  

Unless you’ve been living in an underground bunker for the last couple of years, you’ll know that the Volkswagen Group doesn’t have the best of reputations. In 2015, it was discovered that they had been lying about the emissions produced from their cars. Using hidden devices, they were able to cheat the system and make it look as if their cars produced far less pollution than they really do.

What has happened since?

The U.S. has been tough with Volkswagen. They issued them with a fine of $2.8bn. On top of this, VW agreed to compensate drivers in the States with a total of $15bn. This equates to between £4000 – £8000 per vehicle owner.

In Switzerland, they were so disgusted, they banned the sale of VW diesel cars.

The U.K. has been equally tough. Somebody from the Department of Transport sent a strongly worded letter to Volkswagen. And there are reports of a prank phone call, although this was unconfirmed.

But to show us Brits that they do really care for the environment, and for us, VW has announced a generous sounding scrappage scheme.

The Volkswagen Scrappage scheme

The VW Group announced they would be offering between £1000 and £8000 discount on a brand new car if you traded in your old model.

To qualify, your car must be a diesel and first registered in the UK on or before 31st December 2009 featuring a Euro 1 – 4 emissions standard engine. Visit car fuel data for more details.

A couple of issues with this scheme…

The first issue

The VW Group cars involved in the scandal were registered from 2009 onwards. That means the scrappage scheme doesn’t really have anything to do with their “dodgy” cars.

The second issue

VW Group cars aren’t the cheapest. If you wanted to receive a sizeable sum for your car, you would need to spend £25k+ on a new one. How many people that drive around in a 10-year-old diesel have that kind of money to spend? This means that the market isn’t going to be huge.

So is it a great deal?

Not really. The VW Group has entered this into their T&C’s – Not available in conjunction with any other offer.

If you’ve ever bought a new car before, you’ll know that you’ll often be able to get discounts, whether this is dealer contributions to finance, free upgrades or just money off the list price.

Scrapping your car means that you won’t qualify for any of the above.

I paid a visit to a couple of dealers who confirmed that they would not give any further discounts if I used the scrappage scheme.

How much money can you really save?

I decided to take a look to see if the scrappage scheme would save me money.

I own a Lexus diesel registered in 2006 which is currently valued at around £2000.

My first stop for getting a decent price on a new car was Carwow. For those that have never used this site before, it’s great. All you do is enter the car that you want, and in the next day or so, five dealers message you with the cheapest price they can offer that car for. This stops you having to faff about in various dealers and haggling.

After receiving prices from some nearby dealers, I was fairly surprised at the fact that using the scrappage scheme would actually end up costing me.

I took a look at three different models across the VW group, all at different price points.


Seat Ibiza 1.0 S VW Golf GTE 1.4 Audi Q7 e-tron 3.0
On the Road Price £13,130 £32,135 £66,500
Scrappage discount £2500 £5000 £8000
Total price £10,630 £24,635 (includes £2.5k government grant) £58,500
Carwow price £10,630 £25,847 (includes £2.5k government grant) £59,028
Total price (- value of my car @£2000) £8,630 £23,847 £57,028
Difference Scrappage scheme £2000 more expensive Scrappage scheme £1212 more expensive Scrappage scheme £1472 more expensive

Bear in mind that some discounts from dealers involve you financing the car through them. This is usually in the region of £1ooo – £2000. This is something you may wish to consider if you’re looking to finance the car yourself.

Also, note that you will probably receive more for your car if you sell privately compared to trading in.


What does it all mean?

The chances are, the Volkswagen scrappage scheme will end up costing you more. If my car had been worth less than £800, then it may have been worth using the scheme to by the Golf GTE.

And if my car had been worth under than £500, then scrapping it for the Audi may have been worthwhile. But how many people go from a sub £500 car to a £65,000 car in one swoop?

As for the Ibiza, that looks like a bad deal all round.

So what’s the point of the Volkswagen scrappage scheme?

A couple of reasons.

First of all, it’s an attempt to make the group look like they do actually care for the environment. They will get rid of all these dirty old cars and replace them with new, less polluting ones.

It will drive sales up. People will think they are getting a better deal on their old car, which will help convince them to buy new.

In conclusion…

If you’re looking for a new car, by all means, take a look at this scheme but make sure you do your calculations first. The chances are, you will end up paying extra.

And to the VW Group – shame on you. If you really care about your customers and the environment, it’s time to put your money where your mouth is.

I would love to hear from anybody that has managed to haggle any money off a new car on top of the scrappage discount.

2 Comments on “Volkswagen Scrappage Scheme. Ripping Us Off Again?”

    1. Unfortunately, it’s not something that surprises me. I think the car industry needs quite a shake-up!

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