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Number plate updates mean owners of zero-emissions cars can secure a new green design which could soon give them extra benefits such as discounted parking. The AA says the new plates will make it easier to identify zero-emission cars so local authorities can put in place new incentives to encourage people to make the switch.

The AA says local schemes could include cheaper parking and special cost-free entry into zero-emissions zones.

Green plates will act as a driver’s eligibility sticker to enter these areas so it could be vital that electric car owners grab the new designs.

An AA survey found one in five road users say the new plates may influence them to buy an electric car.

Almost half say they are already considering making the switch when they next change vehicles.

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The plates will have a simple green bar on the left-hand side after previous proposals to make the whole plate green were ditched.

However, the plates will not be mandatory with those buying a new model able to secure the old designs if they wish.

Edmund King, AA President said the group welcomed the move to introduce green plates as it would “encourage more drivers to switch”.

He said: “Most people choose an EV because they are great to drive, better for the environment and have lower running costs.

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“However, almost one in five say the introduction of green number plates may influence them to switch to an EV so it is a move that we welcome.

“To achieve government targets on zero-emissions we need to encourage more drivers to switch and almost half of AA members say they will consider an EV when they next change their car.

“I first drove an EV in 2001 and they have come on in leaps and bounds since then. Today I pleased to be one of the first to get a green plate on my EV.”

Existing electric vehicle owners can purchase a new plate at a registered number plate supplier.

They simply need to provide some original documents to prove their name and address and show they are allowed to use the registration number on the vehicle.

An AA survey found that 37 percent of respondents agree that newly registered electric cars should be fitted with new plates.

They said this was important to differentiate the models between petrol and diesel vehicles.

Electric car experts at Power My EV said the small perks were crucial to encourage people to switch to zero-emission cars.

However, Mat and Laura Thomson, founders of the firm said more support was still needed.

They said: “A small perk like parking spaces reserved exclusively for drivers of electric models gives other drivers a daily nudge about the advantages of an electric vehicle.

“Electric vehicles are quietly taking a larger share of the UK market, and should be taken seriously if we want to move towards a greener future.

“Whilst the green spaces would be a welcome initiative, other measures to help incentivise people switch to EVs are much needed.”

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