Demand for scrapping cars in Scottish cities surge following LEZ introduction

The demand for scrapping cars between May and June 2024 has increased more than 64% in Scottish cities compared to the same period from 2023. These figures follow new Low Emission Zone (LEZ) restrictions beginning to operate in three key Scottish cities. 

Picture of central Glasgow's skyline

Aberdeen, Dundee and Edinburgh all began to enforce Clean Air Zone (CAZ) and LEZ restrictions on the 1st June 2024, despite these rules first being introduced in May 2022. The two-year grace period was implemented to allow drivers and businesses to prepare, and the data suggests that drivers have been doing just that as the enforcement drew closer. A similar scheme is also in place in Glasgow, although this has been enforced since 2023.

Drivers with a non-compliant and non-exempt vehicle now face a penalty charge of £60 (halved if paid within two weeks) when driving in the city, and there is no charge for non-exempt vehicles to pay if entering the zone, like there is in London.

Through the Low Emission Zone Support Fund, the Scottish government earmarked over £8 million to funding grants for residents and small business within 20 kilometres of any city in which a LEZ is present. Households could gain a scrappage grant of up to £3,000 for one vehicle per adult or household, and microbusinesses were able to receive £2,000 of funding for scrapping a non-compliant, non-SORN business vehicle – providing it was purchased before 17th September 2020.

With the Transport Secretary Fiona Hyslop announcing that over 4,000 non-compliant vehicles had been scrapped or retrofitted via the fund, we thought we’d have a look at our own numbers to see how many quotes we were getting from the three new LEZ cities compared to this time last year, and the numbers painted a clear picture!

As a whole, demand rose 64% year-on-year, with the biggest rise coming in Dundee, who asked for 77% more quotes than in 2023. Edinburgh’s quote demand rose by 72%, while Aberdeen seemed less phased, bringing the average down with just a 40% rise (although that’s still significantly higher than in 2023.)

Postcode % change in quote demands from 2023 to 2024
AB 40%
DD 77%
EH 72%
Total 64%
Picture of central Aberdeen with trees in the foreground

“We’ve definitely seen an increased demand in and around the Scottish cities that are subject to these LEZ restrictions since the end of the grace period, as people are seeing the direct impact of the penalties and restrictions on their day-to-day routines,” said our Operations Manager, David Kottaun.

“The LEZ restrictions leave many drivers’ vehicles non-compliant, meaning that in many cases they’re now too expensive to run. The value of these vehicles will also have dropped in these areas since the introduction of the penalties, so scrapping the vehicle will be the most sensible, and convenient, decision for lots of owners.”

If you’re looking to scrap your vehicle, either due to oncoming Clean Air Schemes or otherwise, then find out how much your car could be worth today. All it takes is one quick call to our team of experts, and they’ll find you the very best price for your car in a matter of moments.


Scrap Car Comparison analysed internal quote data to reveal increases in demand following the introduction of Low Emission Zone enforcement in Scottish cities, at the end of the original two-year grace period. Quote figures were analysed in May and June of 2024 and compared to the same months in 2023 to reveal percentage increases. The following postcodes were used to represent each city affected by the LEZ restrictions – AB (Aberdeen), DD (Dundee), EH (Edinburgh). 

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