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Monthly Archives: August 2015

PHEV Electric cars – £5,000 Plug In Car Grant extended until at least Feb 2016

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The Government has announced that the current Plug-in Car Grant will continue until at least February 2016 with a longer-term plan to be announced after the November spending review.

The move is intended to continue the growing sales boost electric vehicle take-up and will see motorists and business fleet operators continue to be offered up to £5,000 off the price of an electric car for all categories of vehicle.  This includes popular models such as;

  • Audi A3 1.4 TFSI e-tron
  • Mercedes Benz C350e
  • Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
  • Nissan Leaf
  • Tesla Model S Hatchback
  • Volkswagen Golf GTE
  • Volvo XC90 T8 Hybrid

Previously the Government had announced that grant levels would be reviewed once 50,000 vehicles had been sold, with this milestone expected to be reached in November this year.

Further details about how the plug-in car grant will be structured beyond February are expected following the Government Spending Review in November.

Transport Minister, Andrew Jones MP said: “I’m pleased to announce today that the Government is maintaining the current levels of grant, even as we move past the milestone of 50,000 vehicles.

“The UK is now the fastest growing market for electric vehicles in Europe. We will continue to invest to help make this technology affordable to everyone and to secure the UK’s position as a global leader.”

Hetal Shah, head of Go Ultra Low, welcomed the news, saying: “Continuing the Plug-in Car Grant at current levels is positive news for everyone, as it encourages zero-emission motoring and secures more funding for a greater number of ULEV buyers. This announcement demonstrates the government’s commitment to supporting the growth of the ULEV market. If we are to meet ambitious targets for ULEV uptake, continued investment is paramount.”

DSG Auto’s Top 10 BMW’s …. Have We Missed Yours?

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Stylish. Affordable. Reliable. It’s no wonder that BMW’s are such a popular choice with our clients here at DSG Auto Contracts. Promoted by the famous tagline ‘The Ultimate Driving Machine,’ German manufacturer BMW has created some truly iconic vehicles!

We bring you 10 examples of BMW at its finest…

Top 10 BMW's

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Low Mileage Users – Should I buy a Diesel? You may have problems with a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) Filter.

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What is a Diesel Particulate Filter?

Most modern diesel vehicles are fitted with a Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) which removes harmful soot from the exhaust gases before they enter the atmosphere.

Why have a DPF?

In order to meet strict European emissions legislation, DPF’s are used to help reduce the amount of pollutants from diesel engine vehicles.

Using advanced technologies, the DPF reduces exhaust smoke and black soot, significantly lowering emissions and protecting the environment.

How does the DPF work?

As well as converting harmful exhaust gases in the same way as a conventional catalytic converter, the DPF also ‘traps’ soot particles (particulates) that are produced in the exhaust gas. The DPF continues to do this until a predetermined level is reached.

As with any filter they have to be emptied regularly to maintain performance. For a DPF this process is called ‘regeneration’ – the collected soot is burnt off at high temperature to leave only a tiny ash residue.

Symptoms of active regeneration

During active regeneration you may notice the following symptoms:

– Cooling fans running

– Increased idle speed

– Deactivation of automatic Stop/Start

– A slight increase in fuel consumption

– A hot, acrid smell from the exhaust.

– Engine note change

How will the DPF affect me?

In order to carry out the regeneration, the DPF needs to reach and maintain a higher exhaust temperature than normal. Under most conditions, your car can do this unaided.

However, in some circumstances, it can’t reach the required temperature (usually due to frequent short journeys or stop-start driving), in which case the driver is normally alerted by a warning light and/or a message appearing in the instrument panel, depending on the make and model of the vehicle.

What should I do if the warning light comes on?

Most importantly, do not ignore it. If the light has come on, it does not necessarily mean there is a fault with the DPF. It’s simply telling you that the Diesel Particulate Filter on your car needs help in carrying out the DPF Regeneration.

To do this, you need to drive in a particular way to increase the exhaust temperature – typically 10-15 minutes at a suitable road speed, whilst maintaining an engine speed of approximately 2,500rpm. (This may vary depending on make and model of vehicle).

If you fail to address the issue, the DPF light stay on and additional lights or symbols may also come on as soot levels will continue to increase. Check your vehicle handbook for details.

You may also experience a reduction in power, followed by a complete DPF blockage and the need for a costly replacement filter.

What happens if two or more lights come on?

If more lights come on, the DPF Regeneration can usually only be carried out at an authorised repairer and should be done immediately.

Apart from a reduction in engine power, the engine may fail to start if ignored.

Is there anything else I should know?

If the DPF needs replacing as a result of ignoring the warning lights or messages, the cost of replacing the DPF may not be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, if still in force.

Note, if your car is fitted with a DPF, you should not use 100% RME (rapeseed methyl ester) biodiesel as this can cause damage to the fuel system.

Use forecourt BS EN 590 diesel only.


From February 2014 the inspection of the exhaust system carried out during the MOT test will include a check for the presence of a DPF. A missing DPF, where one was fitted when the vehicle was built, will result in an MOT failure.