More than a third of UK drivers want the government to scrap smart motorways in 2023, a new survey has revealed.

What Car? Spoke to 1,698 motorists on what policy priorities should be for the Government and local authorities in 2023. More than a third – 37.3 per cent – said that smart motorways should be scrapped, contrasting the 3.6 per cent who would rather see the projects completed as planned.

However, the biggest priority for 2023 was seen to be fixing potholes – with 58.9 per cent of those questioned choosing this option. A previous study by What Car? found that local authorities across Britain paid out more than £12 million in compensation to motorists who had their cars damaged by poor road surfaces and potholes between 2018 and 2021.

Some 40.8 per cent of respondents also stated that they wanted the country’s EV charging infrastructure improved.

Steve Huntingford, editor of What Car?, said: “Smart motorways have a long way to go in convincing many drivers, with our research highlighting just how negative the public mood is towards the technology.

“The other priorities from drivers reflect the driving reality of today. Poor road surfaces and a lack of charging infrastructure for electric drivers, as well as continuing question marks on how things like Fuel Duty will be replaced in the future, should all be at the top of the checklist for policy makers.”

A quarter of those questioned also wanted clarification on how fuel duty will be replaced as more buyers opt for battery-powered vehicles.


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