Mr. Robert Ainsworth
To ask the President of the Board of Trade what direct financial assistance his Department is providing for the development of(a) petrol engines, (b) diesel engines and (c) electric motors for vehicles; and what research it is sponsoring in each case.
§ Mr. McLoughlin
The only current research project is the Drives Club II. This involves DTI financial support of up to £790,102 to ERA Technology Ltd. for innovative, pre-competitive research in the field of electric variable speed drives under the research and technology initiative. Although the project is not specifically targeted at motor vehicles, the research is relevant to electric vehicles. Rover Group, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars Ltd. and Lucas Industries are involved in the research.