OLD DIESEL car owners could be lured into scrapping their motor for a new one with a £2,000 payment from the Government.

Ministers are drawing up plans to target the most polluting ageing diesel drivers in a bid to get those vehicles off the road.

The government is said to be discussing the introduction of payments of between £1,000 and £2,000 for the oldest diesel cars that drivers agree to scrap in exchange for buying new, lower-emission vehicles.

A similar scheme in 2009 during the recession, allowed a car to be scrapped for a £2,000 discount on a new vehicle, with the manufacturer and the government each providing a concession of £1,000.

There are more than 11million diesel cars on British roads and remarkably about two million of them are more than 12 years old.

Diesel pump

Diesel pump

According to recent analysis, data, a scrappage scheme introduced to the oldest cars in the worst-polluted cities — London, Birmingham, Nottingham, Leeds and Derby — could lead to as many as 150,000 vehicles being scrapped.

Diesel drivers look set to be whacked. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has said that he plans to add another £12.50 to the £11.50 congestion charge for drivers of diesel cars registered before 2016.

Seven in ten motorists back the idea of a diesel scrappage scheme, according to a survey of 20,000 AA members released this month.

However, Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, said: “It is not a simple matter of taking the oldest cars out of circulation. The worst polluters could well be much more recent models that do high mileages in congested towns and cities.”

Conservative MPs will push the government to commit to a diesel scrappage scheme in a Commons debate on Wednesday.

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