Glasgow is poised to be at the forefront of the UK's electric car revolution after Gordon Brown said that this month's Budget would include specific measures to increase their use.

The Prime Minister said that trials for electric cars are expected to begin next year in cities across the UK, with councils being invited to submit bids to become Britain's first "green cities".

Ministers will also meet electricity suppliers to develop a national network of roadside power points where vehicles can recharge their batteries.

Business and council leaders in Glasgow said that the city was in prime position to benefit from the schemes. The Herald reported yesterday that a Scottish consortium had been awarded more than £1.8m to run a pilot electric car scheme in Glasgow over the next two years.

The trial, which is set to be formally unveiled next month, will see 40 electric vehicles produced by Glasgow-based car manufacturer Allied Mobility, with the first cars coming on to the road by the end of the year.

The money has been provided by the Technology Strategy Board (TSB), a subsidiary of the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills, as part of its Ultra Low Carbon Vehicle Demonstration Programme, after a successful bid backed by Glasgow City Council.

According to a report seen by The Herald and submitted to the council last week, several council departments have expressed an interest in taking on electric vehicles themselves.

The report also outlines the major benefits of the pilot scheme to the 2014 Commonwealth Games, saying: "The bid for the Commonwealth Games committed the council to the delivery of a low-carbon Games ... a known and trusted supply of low carbon vehicles within the city would not only be an advantage during games time, but would also help showcase Glasgow and its innovative companies to the world."

In addition, Glasgow is one of just five local authorities in the UK that has been invited to bid for a parallel scheme to stimulate the motor industry by producing electric cars on a large scale.

The other partners in the consortium are Dundee-based Axeon, which will supply batteries for the cars; ScottishPower, which will provide charging points; Strathclyde University, which will provide technical assistance, and Scottish Enterprise, which has provided around £100,000 of funding.

Glasgow councillor Irfan Rabbani, executive member for sustainability and the environment, said: "The technologies we hope to bring to the city, and the new ground we hope to break, are about creating a vibrant and successful future for Glasgow, not only as Scotland's greenest city but as one of the most sustainable cities in Europe."

Paul Nelson, managing director of Allied Mobility, said that the technology required to produce electric cars on a large scale was already in place.

The new electric cars would be fitted with dual chargers, meaning that as well as being charged at dedicated charging stations, they could also be plugged into an ordinary mains socket.

He explained: "We've built a number of demonstration vehicles, and we have around 30 of them on the road now, some of which we sold to the Electricity Supply Board in Ireland. Glasgow is as suitable as any large city for a scheme like this, as the quality of its air is very poor. We've also had great support from Glasgow City Council."

Gordon McGregor, energy and environment director at ScottishPower, said: "We are excited to be working on this project, which we believe could have a hugely positive impact both in Glasgow and across the UK."

With money being made available for environmental projects, a number of other UK cities are expected to flaunt their green credentials over the coming weeks.

Yesterday London mayor Boris Johnson announced plans to deliver 25,000 electric car-charging spaces by 2015, and set a target of getting 100,000 electric vehicles on to London's streets. Mr Johnson also said he wanted to convert at least 1000 Greater London Authority fleet vehicles to electric by 2015.