However, leading fleet analysts are still urging fleet managers to take a careful look at their drivers' records, as thousands face paying more in tax than the value of the fuel they receive through the perk. The rise takes the 2001/2002 charge on which drivers are taxed if they receive free fuel for private mileage from £1,700 to £1,930 for a petrol vehicle of 1,400cc or less and from £2,170 to £2,460 for diesels under 1,400cc. The tax charge for 1,401cc to 2,000cc vehicles rises to £2,460 from £2,170 for both petrol and diesel vehicles and for over 2,000ccs rises from £3,200 to £3,620.
Fleet managers need to carry out in-depth research on every one of their drivers to see if the perk of free fuel is still more than the tax drivers are paying, especially for those paying 40% tax, as the number of miles driven by each driver differs depending on each vehicle's fuel consumption. For example a driver of a Peugeot 406 2.0-litre 110bhp HDi achieving an average 51.3mpg would need to drive about 8,000 miles to break-even under the new tax if they paid 22% tax or 13,000 miles if they paid 40% tax. Before the tax rises, the same driver would have had to cover 6,000 miles as a 22% taxpayer and 12,000 miles as a 40% taxpayer.