This week saw London introduce a new low-pollution zone, known as the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ).

ULEZ will require older, more polluting vehicles to pay £12.50 in order to enter the capital. The scheme, announced by Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, is intended to reduce the number of residents living in areas with illegal levels of air pollution by 100,000.

It has been designed to improve air quality and will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year.

Around half of drivers predict electric vehicle ownership in the future.

An AA-Populus Driver Poll conducted in January 2019 showed that around half of all drivers expect to buy an ultra-low emission vehicle in their lifetime. The AA-Populus Driver Poll is the largest dedicated motoring opinion poll in Europe.

Asked about when they expect to own an Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (one which emits less than 75g CO2/km and has the capability to operate for at least some of the time with zero emissions) around half of all drivers expect to ever buy one (47% EV/Electric Vehicle and 50% PHEV/Plug In Hybrid Electric Vehicle).

How popular are the alternatives?

The AA-Populus Driver Poll showed that more than two thirds (68%) of respondents had seen electric or self- balancing personal transportation devices (such as Segways, hoverboards, electric scooters, electric skateboards and electric unicycles) on pavements/footpaths/roads in their area.

This is despite the fact that they are currently legal to use only on private land with the landowner’s permission, although the government has announced a review of the law in this area.

Londoners are the most likely to have ever seen these devices on pavements/footpaths (83%) and roads (72%) – both numbers being well in excess of their respective UK averages.

Only 9% agree that they would ‘seriously consider buying/using one as an alternative to driving if they were made legal to use on roads and/or pavements/footpaths’.

With London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone due to extend to the North and South Circular by October 2021, cost-sensitive drivers may need to start exploring the alternatives sooner rather than later.

Find out more about the AA-Populus Driver Poll here.


Populus carried out interviews on behalf of The AA between 15 and 21 January 2019. There were 21,039 responses. Populus is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. For more information, see