Transport minister Robert Goodwill has opened a state-of-the-art testing facility in Milton Keynes that will support the government’s pledge for every new car and van to be emission-free by 2040.

The Intertek laboratory is the UK’s highest capacity electric and hybrid vehicle testing centre, and offers Britain’s plug-in car industry access to the latest technology necessary to test the components used in new models.

During his visit Goodwill saw some of the new technology in action including battery simulators designed to test the latest plug-in cars with improved ranges, and the emissions measurement equipment measuring how plug-in vehicles are helping the industry meet tougher EU emission standards.

Goodwill said: “This impressive facility shows how the industry, with our support, is creating highly-skilled jobs and opportunities not just in Milton Keynes but across the whole automotive sector.

“It makes perfect sense that global companies such as Intertek would choose to expand their UK base when we are the largest market for ultra-low emission vehicles in Europe. We are backing industry with a £600m investment until 2020 to ensure every new UK car and van is a zero emission vehicle by 2040.”