“Jacinda Ardern should reverse her position on an exemption for utes in the feebate scheme now she has been corrected that Toyota isn’t bringing an electric ute onto the market in the next 12 to 24 months,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
“Two days ago, the Prime Minister wrongly stated that Toyota were about to bring out an electric ute. She has been corrected by Toyota, who say they have no such plans.
“Did she block an exemption for utes because she wrongly believed electric utes would become available? If so, she should reverse her decision.
“Ardern has also assumed the role of Car Tsar and is now telling New Zealanders what a ‘legitimate’ use for a ute is.
“Ardern said today: ‘A large number of those buyers of those vehicles are not using them for the legitimate use as those who work in the primary sector and the trades.’
“This shows an out of touch Prime Minister wandering into the territory of straight out arrogance. Far beyond reducing emissions, she now believes it is her job to tell New Zealanders what the legitimate use of a ute is.
“Pray tell, how will the Prime Minister define and enforce the legitimate use of a ute? As ACT has been saying all along, the Zero Carbon Act is a pathway to endless and futile micromanagement of the economy.
“This episode shows a Government that is making poor policy decisions on the hoof with little connection to practical reality. Back in the real world, tradies need utes for a variety of tasks and will still buy them. The feebate scheme just means they’ll face an extra tax to fund Teslas for wealthier car buyers.”