Fleet News

Mitsubishi Carisma GDi 1.8 Sport - 3,570 miles



##mitcaris.jpg --Right##JUST days before the expected publication of the Competition Commission's new car pricing inquiry in December (now due at the end of this month), Mitsubishi cut up to 15% off the list prices of its vehicles. The realignment, said the importer, was needed to give business a jump start after months at a virtual standstill. It may be some time before it can be judged whether the price slash has done the trick as far as Mitsubishi's sales are concerned, but it has made our long term test Carisma GDI 1.8 Sport a more attractive proposition from both a company car driver's and a fleet's perspective.

Its P11D value (list price, including VAT and delivery) is down to ú14,815 from ú16,315. For a company car driver travelling fewer than 2,500 business miles under the present benefit-in-kind rules, that means the annual taxable charge drops from ú5,710.25 to ú5,185.25, a saving of ú362.25 over three years for a 23% taxpayer.

Tough luck on those drivers who had a Sport registered before the price decrease, but there is a small bonus for the owner: CAP Motor Research's January Monitor Future Residual Values is predicting it will be worth ú4,850, 33% of price new after three years/60,000 miles. That's 4% up on what the same model was showing in the December issue, which equates to a ú50 rise in expected used value after taking into consideration the front end price reduction and slower rate of depreciation.

Running costs have been affected for the good, too. Pre-price cut, CAP Monitor placed the GDI Sport at 28.7p per mile over the typical fleet cycle, its class-best petrol consumption of 41.5mpg Combined contributing significantly. Now it's down to 26.2ppm, which over 60,000 miles would save a fleet ú1,500 on just one car.

Contract hire rates have also shifted. HSBC Vehicle Finance (UK) quotes ú361.69 a month, including maintenance. Before December, the rate was ú376.68. The only backward step our Carisma has taken since the last report is in real life fuel consumption. That's slipped from 39.2mpg to 38.5mpg as a consequence of colder weather and a higher proportion of short trips.

Gervais Seymour

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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