Fleet News

Plea to think clean, not small

THE Government must think 'clean' not 'small is clean', according to Mitsubishi which this week produced figures to show that its 1.8 litre Mitsubishi Carisma is more environmentally-friendly than some of Britain's favourite small fleet cars but is penalised under new Vehicle Excise Duty regulations.

The Japanese manufacturer condemned as 'illogical' Government moves to extend the existing £55 VED discount for sub-1.2 litre cars to sub-1.5 litre cars. The change will take place from July 2001, although the £55 rebate will be backdated to November 2000.

The Carisma 1.8 GDI (direct injection petrol) engine produces 164 g/km of carbon dioxide but VED will be charged at the standard rate of £155. However, small cars which qualify for the £55 rebate but are less CO2 friendly include the Vauxhall Corsa 1.4 16v automatic (193 g/km), the Ford Fiesta 1.3 Efi (171 g/km) and the Daihatsu Terrios 1.3 L (222 g/km).

'Small does not mean clean as far as vehicle engines go,' said a Mitsubish spokesman, who added: 'The Carisma 1.8 will benefit hugely when the new company car taxation system starts from April 2002 as the sliding taxation system is based on the amount of CO2 the vehicle produces.

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