Conversion bonus: less generous as of August 1

The measure went almost unnoticed during the torpor of the summer month. On July 17, new provisions were published in the Official Journal which tighten the conditions for payment of the conversion bonus. Only automobile distribution professionals were truly moved to see the government so brutally reduce the number of beneficiaries of this financial boost, by lowering the maximum CO2 emission threshold and purely and simply excluding the second-hand vehicles from the list. of eligible vehicles.

Yes, you read that right. Households who intended to replace their jaw harp with an older vehicle – but far from new – may give up their project. Worse, the coveted car must henceforth emit 116 grams of CO2 per kilometer at most, against 122 g / km of CO2 until August 1, 2019. This significantly reduces the list of vehicles eligible for the premium – and excludes large family cars.

Government’s objective: reduce the number of scrapping premium requests

Officially, the Ministry of Ecology and Transport wishes to reserve its financial assistance for the most modest households, for the purchase of “really cleaner” vehicles. Understand: buy everything, ladies and gentlemen, except a used diesel car, even recent.

Second-hand vehicles, however, represent nearly 67% of conversion premiums paid since the start of 2019, of which 48% run on diesel according to Bercy, not super (compared to 83% of scrapped vehicles). This proportion only reflects the nature of the second-hand market, 62% dominated by Diesel in the first half of the year (source: Autoscout24).

The annual budget allocated to the premium exhausted in seven months

Nearly 240,000 files for the assumption of the conversion bonus were filed on the first seven m

in 2019, almost as much as during the whole of the previous year. In the spring, Bercy sounded the alarm: at this rate, the premium would cost 900 million euros over the year, nearly double the budget affected by the finance law.

In an attempt to restore any financial viability to the system, the government decided on July 17 to tighten the conditions for the admissibility of requests from August 1. This involves the downward revision of the amount of aid, the end of the distinction between taxable and non-taxable households, the exclusion of second-hand and models over 60,000 euros (only 65 vehicles out of 300,000 requests in 2018), as well as by lowering the maximum CO2 emission threshold.

Second-hand vehicles and recent diesel are no longer eligible for the conversion bonus

From now on, a person can receive a bonus of 2,500 euros if he buys a car (new or used) with electric or plug-in hybrid propulsion (between 21 and 50 g / km CO2), while having a gasoline vehicle from before 1997 destroyed or a Diesel from before 2001.

The amount is only 1,500 euros if the hybrid purchased is not rechargeable (still between 21 and 50 g / km of CO2). Ditto if the car purchased is a new diesel, new gasoline or new LPG emitting less than 117 g / km of CO2. Still within the limit of 60,000 euros. This bonus of 1,500 euros is not paid to people whose benchmark tax income per unit is greater than 13,489 euros.

More premium on Crit’Air 1 vehicles for affluent households

For people whose benchmark tax income per share is less than or equal to 13,489 euros (i.e. 50% of the less fortunate French) and who live more than 30 kilometers from their place of work (or can prove more than 12,000 km per year for the needs of their profession); but also for people whose tax income is less than or equal to 6,300 euros, the amounts of the first and the last of the three premiums mentioned above go from 2,500 euros to 5,000 euros respectively; and from 1,500 euros to 3,000 euros. This amounts to saying that the doubling of the amount of the premium is maintained for the most modest households. You follow ?

In other words, the French whose benchmark income exceeds 13,489 euros can no longer claim any assistance unless they choose a 100% electric car or a plug-in hybrid (2,500 euros). In fact, used cars are no longer eligible since there is no Crit’Air 1 model on the market with emissions between 21 g / km and 50 g / km of CO2.

The state recognizes that not all French people can change their car. But the premium costs him too much

To fully understand all the nuances of the new scale, it is best to consult the internet page opened by the Ministry of Ecological and Inclusive Transition: primealaconversion.gouv.fr.

The salespeople are a bit confused, too. Above all, they fear that the depletion of the funds allocated to financing the premium will lead to a painful call for air in their treasury. In fact, it is the professionals who, in the vast majority of cases, advance the amount of the premium paid to private buyers in order to facilitate the transaction. They are not required by law to do so.

Representatives of the CNPA – the National Automobile Professions Council – told the Ministry their fear of seeing the difficulties of the previous year repeated in 2019, when it had taken months for the State to reimburse professionals the some 200 million euros collectively advanced for the conversion bonus.