Fleet News

Vauxhall continues backing for LPG

LIQUEFIED petroleum gas will be the most affordable, environmentally-friendly fuel for at least the next seven years, according to the head of Vauxhall. Nick Reilly, chairman and managing director of Vauxhall, said LPG offers the UK vehicle parc an immediate solution to reduce emissions. His comments coincided with Vauxhall's winning of the world's biggest yet LPG fleet deal - a £50 million contract for 3,200 dual-fuel Astras, Vectras and Omegas with Drive Assist.

The Omega will soon benefit from a 2.2-litre dual-fuel engine - currently Vauxhall's largest LPG car engine is the 2.0-litre unit. 'It has only been the lack of convenience of LPG stations that has held back LPG, but this fuel has a very important place in the market for at least seven years,' said Reilly. After that date fuel cell vehicles will start to hit the market, although their introduction will not see an overnight switch to water-emission vehicles.

'At the moment there are big technical problems in producing a fuel cell unit that is small and cheap enough to fit in a car,' said Reilly. He said the manufacturer had received indications that that the Government would maintain its favourable duty treatment of LPG, giving fleet customers strong economic, as well as environmental grounds for adopting the fuel Vauxhall is training 180 of its dealers to carry out service, maintenance and repair work on its dual-fuel range, in anticipation of a boom in LPG sales. Some 15,000 drivers will experience the fuel through the Drive Assist initiative alone.

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