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Buying a new car

If you can afford the cost of a new vehicle there are many advantages.

Buying brand new

The big advantages of new cars are threefold. Firstly, buyers get to choose the exact specification. Secondly, the owner will get benefits such as the full warranty package and any ‘sweetener’ deals that are on offer at the time of purchase. Finally, there will be no unknown history to worry about.

There are more good reasons to buy new. Newer cars will have more advanced technology, and the value of this should not be underestimated – particularly in the areas of fuel efficiency (where huge advances have been made comparatively recently) and safety. Features such as stability control give invaluable or even life-saving help in the event of an emergency.

On the downside, it’s also true that most breakdowns in modern cars stem from electrical faults, many of which are not easily cured at the side of the road.

Claim VAT relief on an adapted motor vehicle

If you are purchasing a new vehicle you may be able to complete the purchase VAT- free if all the following conditions are met:

  • the motor vehicle is supplied to a disabled person who normally uses a wheelchair to be mobile.
  • the vehicle is permanently and substantially adapted.
  • the adapted motor vehicle is for the domestic or personal use of the disabled wheelchair user, and the supplier has been given a completed declaration, form VAT1615A, which confirms eligibility.

Definition of ‘wheelchair’ and ‘wheelchair user’

In legal terms, a wheelchair is a chair on wheels for disabled people, which is either manually propelled or electrically powered. A mobility scooter is not a wheelchair for VAT purposes. A wheelchair user is any disabled person who normally uses a wheelchair in order to be mobile. A person who occasionally uses a wheelchair is not eligible.

For further information please see the HMRC leaflet about purchasing zero-rated adapted vehicles for;

  • Customers
  • Dealer and Suppliers
  • Phone the VAT Disabled Reliefs Helpline on 0300 123 1073 and select option 3. The helpline is open Monday to Friday from 8am to 5pm.