The increasing number of electric vehicles on offer to consumers and the financial advantages associated with making the switch to ultra low emission vehicles (ULEVs) has seen the number of new vehicle registrations skyrocket in recent years. Figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders (SMMT) reveal that over 63,000 new electric or hybrid electric vehicles were registered in 2017 – an astonishing increase on 2013’s figures of around 3,500.
What though are the advantages to the commercial user considering making the leap to embracing this new technology? Currently, there are close to 40 models of electric vehicles available for consumers in the UK to choose from.
The latest models of electric vehicles produce no CO2 exhaust emissions with the government expecting their uptake to play a significant role in meeting emission targets – with the UK legally committed to reducing emissions by 80% of 1990 levels by 2050. The government is clearly taking the impact of the technology seriously having pledged to invest over £600M by 2020 to support the uptake of ultra-low emission vehicles.
The advantages of people adopting this technology are not, however, restricted to creating a greener environment but the financial benefits to businesses adopting electric vehicles into their fleet are numerous – they are cheaper to run than petrol or diesel vehicles; benefit from tax breaks and have generous government grants available.
It is also worth remembering the ultra-low emission zones (ULEZ) in London will come into force from April 2019, with the heaviest polluting cars, vans and motorbikes having to pay £12.50 to drive through central London, while buses, coaches and HGVs will pay £100.
The capital’s ULEZ will cover the same area as the existing congestion zone and will be in addition to the congestion charge. The charge will hit petrol cars that fail to meet Euro 4 standards and diesel vehicles that do not meet Euro 6 standards.
Many companies incorporating ULEVs into their business are keen to promote their commitment to reducing their carbon footprint as more clients make environmentally conscious decisions when choosing where to spend money. Schemes such as the joint funded government and auto industry-backed campaign Go Ultra Low Companies provide an opportunity to display this commitment. It also seeks to increase awareness and showcase the numerous benefits of electric vehicles to corporate and private buyers in the UK.
The decision for businesses on whether to take the plunge and introduce electric vehicles to their fleet may feel like a leap into the unknown but there are companies out there that can provide guidance and support.
Given the push from vehicle manufacturers and the government, not to mention the financial benefits to businesses, it seems only a matter of time before electric vehicles are the norm, rather than just the latest emerging technology.
Source – UK Construction Online