Drivers are key to the successful fleet introduction of electric vehicles, according to Energy Saving Trust fleet consultant Karl Anders.
“Some drivers are very anti, but all organisations also have environmental warriors and when employees get to drive an electric vehicle they realise they are a lot of fun,” he said, speaking at the ACFO Electric vehicle seminar.
Highlighting the exceptional torque and power available from start-up when compared with diesel and petrol engined models, Anders said: “Drivers do not have to rev an electric vehicle very hard for it to respond.
“Getting employees to drive electric vehicles and experience performance for themselves is very important.
“They need to be involved in the whole process because different driving skills are required to obtain maximum performance and increased range.”
It’s a view shared by IBM's Phil Redman, who said the introduction of electric vehicles to the company car choice list had been accompanied by a major employee awareness programme.
At IBM, where Redman manages a 4,000-strong company car fleet and 5,500 cash allowance drivers, employees were asking about the availability of electric vehicles and subsequently five employees have selected them with orders placed for a further seven, including six BMW i3s.
In addition to undertaking cost calculations and introducing a long-term demonstrator programme, Redman said the provision of additional driver information included intranet and employee bulletin articles, information on vehicle space which can be limited due to battery packs and advice on vehicle recharging and the impact of seasonal variances on driving range.
See highlights from the seminar below...