Low-emission fleets appeal to today’s consumers

The vast majority of Britons (86%) have changed their behaviour during the past five years to lessen their impact on the environment, new research has found.

And more than half (54%) of motorists now believe it is becoming ‘cooler’ to drive an electric or low-emission car than a diesel or petrol vehicle. It’s even influencing where consumers choose to spend their money – 49% said they would be attracted to delivery firms that operate a low-emission fleet, compared to 35% who said they’d be attracted to a food company using organic ingredients.

What’s more, awareness is increasing among motorists of the savings to be made from switching to an electric vehicle, such as cheaper fuel and road tax (acknowledged by 42%), lower maintenance costs (24%) and access to emissions-restricted areas (25%).

However, it’s clear that motorists also have some concerns.Some 22% of those who took part in the research said they didn’t know enough about the different fuel types available and what would suit their driving needs, which might put them off making the switch.The possibility of running out of battery mid-journey is the main reason why people might not choose to go electric (55%), and concerns about access to charging facilities (50%).

“The upfront price of electric vehicles is often higher than petrol or diesel equivalents, but that gap is closing all the time – and the savings available throughout the lifetime of an electric vehicle mean it’s likely to cost less in total,” said Ashley Barnett, Head of Consultancy at Lex Autolease, which conducted the study.

“Where drivers have access to charging facilities at home or work, electric vehicles can fit seamlessly into everyday life. For lower-mileage users who mainly drive in urban areas, there’s simply no reason to delay enjoying the benefits of electric.”