The industry still has two weeks to respond to government plans that would see van manufacturers forced to sell a minimum of 70% zero-emission models by the end of the decade.

The zero emission vehicle (ZEV) mandate will compel manufacturers of LCVs, as well as cars, to sell a rising proportion of EVs before the outright ban on conventional diesel and petrol models in 2035.

The department for transport proposes a ZEV target trajectory for new vans sold beginning at 10% in 2024 and reaching 70% by 2030 on the way to 100% in 2035.

Technology and decarbonisation minister Jesse Norman said: “The government is doing more than ever to help the UK move away from petrol and diesel and towards electric vehicles.

“That means investing in charging infrastructure and giving a clear direction to manufacturers, so they can roll out new electric vehicles faster and more efficiently.”

The SMMT welcomed the “long-awaited” consultation but said its late publication and lack of regulatory certainty meant product planning was practically impossible.

“The continued lack of clarity as to what technologies will be permitted beyond 2030 undermines attempts to secure investment,” added Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive.

“The UK new car and van market is already moving at pace towards electrification, the result of massive investment by manufacturers and increased consumer demand.

“If the UK is to lead the global race to zero emission mobility, however, it must go further and faster in unlocking infrastructure investment, incentivising EV ownership and helping ensure more of these vehicles are developed and built in Britain.”

The consultation ends on 24 May and can be found here: