What is the Clean Vehicle Retrofit Accreditation Scheme?

    If you’re affected by ULEZ or another regional Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone, chances are you’ve heard of the Clean Vehicle Retrofit Accreditation Scheme, or CVRAS. 

    The Energy Saving Trust manages this scheme, which allows manufacturers and mechanics to convert (or, retrofit) existing vehicles to make sure they can meet standards that are regulated in certain areas, in efforts to reduce pollution. Specifically, some diesel vehicles can be brought up to Euro 6 standards.

    what is the clean vehicle retrofit accreditation scheme
    The CVRAS could help you comply with emissions standards, without needing a new car.

    If you’re wondering if the CVRAS could be a viable way to make your diesel vehicle compliant with ULEZ and other emission zones, read on.

    What is the Clean Vehicle Retrofit Accreditation Scheme?
    How can I retrofit my diesel vehicle?
    Can I make my car ULEZ-compliant?
    Can I make my diesel car compliant in CAZ and LEZ?
    Can I swap my engine to be ULEZ-compliant?
    Can I retrofit my car to LPG?
    CVRAS approved companies
    The best way to upgrade your vehicle

    What is the Clean Vehicle Retrofit Accreditation Scheme?

    This UK-wide certification scheme approves some specific methods of retrofitting diesel vehicles, such as taxis, vans, Light Goods Vehicles (LGVs), buses, coaches, and Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) to ensure that their NOx and particulate matter emissions are reduced. Retrofits approved by the scheme are given equivalency to Euro 6 standards, making these vehicles compliant with all regulated emission zones.

    How can I retrofit my diesel vehicle?

    There are two main ways to retrofit a diesel vehicle, which are accredited by the CVRAS. The first is to upgrade the exhaust system, to make sure that the vehicle is producing fewer pollutants. 

    The second is to make changes to the engine, which would then in turn have an effect on the emissions output of the vehicle. 

    Some vehicles are not eligible for retrofitting methods – it’s worth checking whether yours is, or if the only solution for achieving compliance is to sell your vehicle and buy a compliant model.

    Can I make my car ULEZ-compliant?

    ULEZ scrappage scheme has been launched by Transport for London (TfL) allowing households in Greater London to claim £2,000 in order to upgrade their vehicles and avoid charges. While the scheme primarily awards grants to residents to scrap their vehicles, there is also a £5,000 retrofit grant available for non-compliant, wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAVs).

    Charities, sole traders, and small businesses in London can also make use of this grant and choose between scrapping, retrofitting, or replacing their ULEZ non-compliant vans and minibuses. The grants for retrofitting these vehicles are also worth £5,000.

    can i make my car ULEZ compliant?
    There are currently grants of up to £5,000 to make eligible vehicles ULEZ compliant.

    Can I make my diesel car compliant in CAZ and LEZ?

    In Scotland, there’s a Low Emission Zone Retrofit Fund, with the specific intention to support small businesses and sole traders by making their vehicles compliant to avoid penalties. Up to 80% of funding for CVRAS-accredited retrofitting can be awarded.

    In Bristol, there’s funding available to retrofit or upgrade cars, private hire vehicles, taxis, vans, LGVs, HGVs, and coaches. This funding can be applied for by residents and businesses alike, as long as the vehicles were purchased before 5th November 2021. Funding starts at £2,000 for cars and goes up to £16,000 for HGVs and coaches.

    In many of these cases, you need to secure funding before you start the process of a retrofit. Check local council websites for full terms and conditions of receiving financial support to upgrade your diesel vehicle.

    Can I swap my engine to be ULEZ-compliant?

    This depends on the vehicle type. At present, there are no CVRAS-approved ways to re-power the engine of a non-compliant diesel car. If a car owner re-powered their diesel engine in order to become compliant with Euro 6 standards, they would have to notify the DVLA about the vehicle modification, and pay for a full rolling road emissions test to record the new emissions levels of the modified vehicle. 

    For non-compliant diesel cars, the simplest solution is to upgrade by selling the non-compliant car and buying or leasing a compliant model.

    Can I retrofit my car to LPG?

    Installing a second fuel tank for liquified petroleum gas (LPG) can work out as a cheaper and greener alternative to running a full-petrol engine, however, it does not upgrade a petrol car’s emission standards to bring them up to Euro 4.

    can i retrofit my car to LPG
    Whilst cheaper and greener to run, LPG engines are not recognised as meeting euro 4 emissions standards.

    CVRAS-approved companies

    Energy Saving Trust keeps a register of CVRAS-approved retrofit suppliers. To find a supplier who can help, type your vehicle into the page, e.g. Land Rover Defender 130. Click through to confirm the type of engine your vehicle has, and an available supplier will be presented, who can give you a quote for a retrofit. 

    Typically, cars and vans start at £6,000 to retrofit, with HGVs coming in at a much higher price point, from £15,000. However, it’s worth getting a specific quote for your vehicle rather than making decisions based on ballpark figures.

    The best way to upgrade your vehicle

    If your vehicle is not eligible for retrofitting with a grant, the good news is – you can still sell it, in order to invest instead in a compliant vehicle. To sell your non-compliant car or van quickly and easily, at Motorway we offer a simple – and completely free – method of getting the best price when selling, whatever the model.

    Selling your car with Motorway is quick, easy, and 100% free.

    Sell with Motorway and our UK-wide network of over 5,000 verified car dealers compete to give you their best price.

    Just enter your reg on the homepage and you will be provided with an instant estimated sale price based on up-to-the-minute market data. We’ll then ask you a few easy questions about your car and guide you through the photos you need to take to complete your vehicle profile. It can be done right from your phone – in a matter of minutes.

    Get your car seen by over 5,000 nationwide dealers when you sell through Motorway.

    If you choose to enter your car into a daily sale, it will be shown to our nationwide network of more than 5,000 verified dealers looking to add to their stock of used cars. Interested dealers will then compete to buy your car, offering you their best price.

    Get your best offer and free home collection when you sell your car with Motorway.

    In as little as 24 hours you will receive your best offer – and, if you choose to go ahead with the sale, your car will be collected for free by the dealer and the money will be quickly and securely transferred to your bank account.

    Ready to sell your car?

    Ready to learn more about valuing, maintaining, and selling your car? Check out more of our guides here, covering everything from hybrid and electric car depreciation, to converting your car to dual-LPG fuel.