According to data from Epyx, one in seven cars and vans operated by fleets are already either hybrid or electric battery powered.
Using the 1link Service Network platform by Epyx, the 14% statistic is based from data between April-September 2020, and compares it against October 2019-March 2020 (9%) as well as April 2019-September 2019 (5%).
Commercial Director at Epyx, Debbie Fox, commented that simply “because of the sheer quantity of fleet vehicles that use 1link Service Network, we believe that this figure provides a good indication of how electrified UK fleets have become overall. It shows that roughly one in seven cars and vans now operated by UK companies is either a hybrid or full electric vehicle, which illustrates how they are becoming an everyday part of transport for businesses.”
Fox also focussed on the sheer speed of this adoption also: “we have gone from 5% at this point last year through to 14% today, no doubt powered largely by both the increased availability of electrified vehicles and the 0% benefit in kind company car taxation rate.”
Whilst these stats are encouraging, they’re not all surprising, as the UK government introduce its new EV-friendly company car tax rates in April 2020, and as an almost immediate response, vehicle leasing companies began reporting a surge in interest in plug-in vehicles almost immediately after the new rates were announced.
But that’s not all - company car drivers who choose completely electric only vehicles also benefit from a 0% BIK rate this tax year as well (rising to 1% the following year, and 2% the year after). A worthwhile incentive and one which clearly resonates, as last month it was reported by Tusker that over 45% of all new orders in the past 30 days had been for pure EVs.
According to Fox, “the Government’s recent announcement regarding banning the sale of petrol and diesel cars from 2030 has created an immoveable target date for all fleets to get up to speed in this important area, and one that is rapidly approaching… this means that everyone is learning about the real-world operation of these vehicles in real time, which is both exciting and challenging.”
Interestingly, as of December 8th 2020, green number plates on electric vehicles were officially rolled out in an effort to raise awareness of the growing number of zero-emission vehicles, as well as clearly indicating which vehicles can benefit from local initiatives such as cheaper parking tariffs and cost-free entry into zero-emission zones.
Green plates can also be fitted to any existing electric vehicles as long as they emit absolutely no CO2 emissions. Transport Minister Rachel Maclean commented; "we are going further and faster than any other major economy to decarbonise transport, improving air quality in our towns and cities in the process and harnessing the power of clean, green technology to end the UK’s contribution to climate change by 2050. Not only will green number plates raise awareness of the increasing number of cleaner vehicles on our roads, they could also unlock a number of incentives for drivers. It’s clear there has never been a better time to make the switch to a zero-emission vehicle."
Further to this, ministers had originally announced that the ban on new internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles would be implemented from 2040, and Prime Minister Boris Johnson made the official announcement just last week that this is to be brought forward by 10 years to 2030. A bold challenge, and not one to be taken lightly.
Fox continued; "we are increasing our knowledge quite quickly but very few fleet EVs have yet gone through a single replacement cycle, so there remains quite a lot to learn… we plan to run the same reports every six months and it’ll be fascinating to see where we are in March 2021."