Fleet News

Electric vehicles spark company car return, says Arval

Cash-takers are returning to company car schemes in “noticeable” numbers thanks to the attractiveness of electric vehicles (EVs), reports Arval UK.

The Government introduced a new zero percentage benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax rate for pure EVs from April this year, and the leasing company says that plug-in company cars are now really gaining traction in the market.

Shaun Sadlier, head of consulting at Arval UK, explained: “Many cash takers liked their company car but didn’t like paying what they perceived as high benefit-in-kind and that was why they opted-out.

“Now, with low benefit-in-kind in place for EVs for at least five years, many more are now returning to company car schemes.”

Arval predicted that this would start to happen some time ago, but Sadlier said: “It’s now becoming noticeable In several of the major fleets with which we work.

“It’s a welcome development that will feed demand for zero-emission vehicles and lead to wider, faster adoption.”

New BIK rates are driving the choice in zero emission vehicles, but Arval believes that there are also a range of other factors in play.

“If you talk to fleet managers and their drivers, there’s a lot of enthusiasm around the vehicles themselves,” continued Sadlier. “We are beyond the early adopter phase and heading into mass-acceptance.

“All it takes is a couple of EVs on a fleet to disprove the reservations some people hold about these vehicles.

“They can see that misgivings such as range anxiety are actually of limited importance for the vast number of journeys that are made.”

Arval UK recently updated its own company car scheme to increase adoption of EVs and the move paid off with almost two thirds of its company car drivers making the switch so far. 

Sadlier said: “All of our consultants and many of our sales team have switched to EVs.

"They act as ambassadors for the technology, developing personal experience to share with customers, friends and family – as more people drive EVs, consumer confidence will increase.

“Coupled with the growing number of different models that are available, plus the recent 2030 announcement, it’s not an exaggeration to say that we can all play our part in a zero-emission future and choosing an EV is a step in that direction.”

Read crucial guidance for fleets on the adoption of EVs in the December edition of Fleet News

Click here for electric cars and hybrids best practice and procurement insight

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