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Uber offers drivers thousands to buy EVs amid race to remove petrol cars

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UBER is offering its drivers thousands to buy an electric vehicle as the company aims to remove petrol cars from its fleet in London by 2025.

The ride-hailing service is making £5,000 grants available to its drivers in the capital who switch to an EV.

Uber is now offering grants of £5,000 for its drivers in London to switch to an EV (stock image)

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Uber is now offering grants of £5,000 for its drivers in London to switch to an EV (stock image)Credit: Alamy

The US company announced the measure to help it meet its previous commitment that all Uber vehicles in London will be fully electric by the end of 2025.

Drivers can spend their grant cash as a lump sum on an EV purchase, or on weekly payments for rental or rent-to-buy agreements.

Uber has also secured discounts of £12,000 to £17,000 on selected EVs for its drivers.

Around a quarter of miles for Uber journeys in London are in electric cars.

There are more than 100,000 Uber vehicles in the UK, with around half in London.

Uber’s UK general manager, Andrew Brem, said: “Now is the time to speed up on electrification, not slow down.

“We cannot reach our collective zero-emission goals without continued action from policymakers and investment across the industry.

“Uber drivers can be the catalyst for accelerating electrification across the transport sector but collaboration will be crucial to combat air pollution and work towards a more sustainable future.”

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said: “I am determined to achieve my mission to make London a net-zero city by 2030, and the electrification of our buses and cars is absolutely key to this.

“I welcome this initiative, which will give drivers who need it a helping hand to switch their petrol or diesel vehicle for an electric one.

Major car brand to release 30 models in next two years with more than half to be EVs – & will include AI driving tech

“Schemes like this are helping us to build a fairer, greener London for everyone.”

The announcement comes after Uber has started testing a new Uber Tasks service in two cities.

Workers can come to your house to do things like building furniture, washing or tidying up the garden.

Other chores include snow removal, packing and unpacking boxes and even putting up your Christmas decorations.

People have been quick to notice the similarity to TaskRabbit, a freelance labour app that matches handymen with everyday tasks.

Uber: a brief history

THE ride-hailing app was founded by Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp in the United States and is now widely used around the world.

Travis Kalanick is an American businessman, co-founder and former CEO of Uber – a position he held from 2010 to 2017.

Uber co-founder Garrett Camp is a Canadian billionaire entrepreneur.

The pair launched the company as UberCabs – now just known as Uber – in March 2009.

Uber went live for the first time in San Francisco in 2010 before gradually expanding to other US cities including New York City and Chicago.\

In 2011, Uber began expanding outside the US when it was launched in Paris, France.

It launched in London in 2012.

Kalanick is now CEO of City Storage Systems, a company focused on redeveloping distressed real estate assets such as parking lots or abandoned strip malls.

Garrett Camp now serves as chairman of both Uber and StumbleUpon – both companies he co-founded.

The move comes as Uber attempts to diversify beyond its original car-hailing roots.

In the UK, the company recently added the ability to book trains and flights.

The Uber Tasks trial will take place in Fort Myers, Florida and Edmonton, Alberta.

Meanwhile, former Argentina star Jose Luiz Gomez is now without a club and drives for Uber to earn a living.

But just a few years ago the right-back was playing for Argentina against Brazil.

Before making it as a full-time professional footballer, Arsenal winger Caitlin Foord worked part-time as an Uber driver in Wollongong, Australia.

A woman has been dubbed “the world’s hottest Uber driver” after she gave up being a Playboy bunny and chose to be behind the wheel.

After splitting with her husband, mum-of-six Nannette Hammond, decided to become an Uber driver and says her customers are always stunned when she picks them up.

Uber has set a target for all its vehicles in London to be fully electric by the end of 2025 (stock image)

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Uber has set a target for all its vehicles in London to be fully electric by the end of 2025 (stock image)Credit: Alamy
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