The leasing sector will ‘defy’ the Government’s ‘tax attack’ and is expecting fleets to grow in 2013, reports the BVRLA.
In an interactive poll taken at the association’s recent conference, 56% of rental and leasing executives said that, based on what their customers were telling them, the number of vehicles on fleet would grow in 2013.
This left 34% expecting fleets to stay the same size and 10% expecting some shrinkage.
The conference saw members briefed on the impact of last March’s Budget, which announced a tightening of the emissions thresholds within the company car tax regime and made it much harder for BVRLA members and their customers to claim tax relief (capital allowances) on lease and rental vehicles.
Asked if new Benefit-in-Kind thresholds would threaten the popularity of company cars, 65% of delegates said no.
However, 58% of them admitted that not being able to claim 100% first-year allowances for ultra-low emission vehicles could challenge the ‘lease versus purchase’ model for a short period.
However, despite these concerns, 98% of members present remained confident that the industry could continue to make a business case for the company car through 2013 and beyond.
“Manufacturers will continue to develop low emission cars, mitigating the 2012 Budget, so that the company car will continue to offer great value”, said David Rawlings of BCF Wessex, one of the speakers at the conference.
“Despite the capital allowance changes, contract hire will still be a tax-efficient service, and should not be seen as a low-cost commodity.”