About the Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund

Accelerating the uptake of low emissions transport

The Low Emission Vehicles Contestable Fund offered up to $6.5 million a year to projects that would accelerate the uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) and other low emission vehicles.

It was a Government fund administered by EECA (Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority). It was one of several government activities paid for via a levy on petrol and engine fuels. The last of the ten funding rounds closed in April, with the results to be published in mid-2021.

One of the most effective ways to reduce our total emissions is by transitioning our fossil-fuelled transport fleet to run on clean, renewable electricity.

Budget 2021 included a boost in funding and expansion in scope for the programme, which will become the Low Emissions Transport Fund (LETF). Full details of the LETF will be available here later in the year.

Objectives of the Fund

Projects selected for co-funding meet at least one of these objectives:

  • Increase the variety and supply of low emission vehicles.
  • Improve the availability of servicing or charging infrastructure in areas where demand is uneconomic or not fully developed.
  • Increase demand for low emission vehicles.
  • Develop innovative products or systems for electric vehicles.
  • Overcome barriers to uptake of LEVs and related technologies.

Scope of the Fund

Co-funded projects must involve mainstream vehicles.

These can include:

  • passenger vehicles and trucks that operate on roads used by the public
  • charging
  • other technologies that will support EV uptake.

These areas are out of scope:

Vehicles and related technologies:

  • maritime, aviation and rail vehicles
  • vehicles intended for off-road purposes such as forklifts and diggers
  • conventional and plug-in hybrid vehicles and those fuelled with biofuel (as they do not use electricity from an external source)
  • two and three wheeled vehicles, such as power-assisted cycles and motorcycles
  • electric bicycles and related secure storage for e-bikes
  • quadricycles and "neighbourhood" electric vehicles
  • electric buses and coaches
  • specialist off-road vehicles such as diggers
  • slow and medium speed AC chargers, for one or multiple businesses
  • AC charging stations at shopping malls, supermarkets and retail centres
  • car share, lease, subscription, rideshare, taxis and rental services
  • combustion engine vehicle to electric conversions, for example a diesel ute or van to electric, classic cars or vans to electric, diesel to electric trucks.

Projects and activities:

  • any activities that would represent an ongoing financial liability for EECA, such as insurance underwriting
  • projects that are purely focused on training or professional development
  • projects that are purely focused on education and information provision (this is a focus of the EECA information campaign)
  • research – being defined as original and planned investigation undertaken with the prospect of gaining new scientific or technical knowledge and understanding
  • international travel
  • “business as usual” costs of an organisation, such as the costs associated with existing staff
  • projects with private good and/or profits, but insufficient public benefit
  • purchase of a light electric car or van instead of a conventional vehicle.

Apply for co-funding

Summaries of approved projects

  • Assessment process

    The EECA Board makes funding decisions based on recommendations from an independent assessment panel. The assessment panel is comprised of experts from the energy, transport and freight sectors.

  • Need some help?

    If you'd like to discuss a project or idea, contact us on LEVFund@eeca.govt.nz, or call Camilla Cochrane on 027 457 0205.