If you’re an established business, you may have been using your petrol or diesel-powered company car(s) for some time.
Changing your company transport may not be the first thing on your mind as a business owner, but switching to electric vehicles can o?er your businesses substantial savings on fuel and maintenance costs, as well as delivering improved compliance with sustainable business and environmental health regulations.
Here, we will explain the advantages of switching to electric vehicles for business, and how to make the most of your electric vehicles in your daily operations.
Lower Running Costs
While driving for one mile in a petrol or diesel car can cost as much as 12 pence, you can drive the same distance in an electric vehicle for as little as 1 pence.
Research by carbuyer.co.uk found that company cars drive an average of 13,200 miles per year. Therefore, for a fleet of six conventional company vehicles, you could be looking at an annual cost of over £9,500. Making the switch to electric, however, would result in an annual fuel expenditure of under £800 - a total saving of £8,700.
Switching to a zero-emission or hybrid electric car could also o?er your business substantial tax reductions. Zero-emission electric vehicles are fully exempt from road tax, while plug-in hybrid electric vehicles cost between £0-105 in the first year (as calculated by to the amount of emissions they release), and £145 in the following years.
In addition, owners of EVs worth more than £40,000 are required to pay a premium, but this does not apply to fully zero-emission vehicles. By comparison, the average road tax for a conventional petrol or diesel car is £165.
And while the cost of the battery of an electric car may initially appear expensive, with an average price of £5,000, this cost is o?set by lower fuel consumption, tax exemptions from fuel duty, vehicle excise duty, company car tax, and van and fuel benefit charges, plus lower maintenance costs.
Electric vehicles also require less maintenance than petrol or diesel-powered cars, and are less likely to need costly repairs, due to having fewer moving parts than an internal combustion engine (ICE).
If you are concerned about the price of an EV battery, you may also have the option to lease the battery, enabling you to spread the costs so you can meet your budget.
Environmental Compliance And Sustainability
Transport is the leading cause of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK and releases up to 28% of all carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.
Using electric vehicles or hybrids helps businesses to lower their carbon footprint by releasing lower levels of CO2 than conventional models; this can help with meeting the targets and responsibilities set out by environmental compliance law, which places restrictions on emissions of CO2 and other harmful gases.
Switching to electric vehicles can also help your business to meet your CO2 and NO2 reduction targets, become compliant with government initiatives such as the Energy Savings Opportunities Scheme (ESOS), and exempt your business from financial penalties and green taxes, such as Ultra-Low Emission Zone charges.
Plus, using EVs can help your business to position itself as a ‘green’ brand. Many major companies are now promoting their low carbon footprint as a way to attract customers who are interested in living a more sustainable lifestyle, and who buy from brands that are eco-conscious.
New Sources Of Revenue
Installing an electric vehicle charging point on your site may o?er a new potential source of revenue from customers and sta?. The UK government o?ers up to 75% funding for the installation of an electric vehicle charging point, meaning that your company can install a charging point for a fraction of the usual cost.
When the charging point is installed, you can use this to generate income from customers who want to charge their electric vehicles. This may also encourage customers to spend longer in your shop or business as they wait for their vehicle to charge, leading to increased sales opportunities.
Getting The Most From Your EVs
There are many potential advantages to using electric vehicles in your business, but how can your company make sure you are getting the best out of your EVs? Here’s our checklist for you to consider:
• Identify Relevant Government Grants And Schemes: There is a wide range of grants and initiatives that can save you money when buying, running, and maintaining your EVs. Research potential vehicles and their eligibility thoroughly before buying a new car.
• Select Your Model Carefully: Not all electric vehicles are fully zero-emission! Check carefully before you buy.
• Drive E?ciently: Enforcing e?cient driving techniques can help to protect your EV's battery and conserve power. Make sure your employees are driving e?ciently by conserving momentum, avoiding heavy braking, reducing speed, minimising the use of air conditioning and heating, and using the vehicle's in-built eco features.
• Staff Training: Employees should be trained in routine electric vehicle maintenance. This helps prevents issues from occurring and enables them to perform basic maintenance when required, thereby enabling your business to save more money.
• Install A Vehicle Charging Point: While it may seem an initial cost, installing a charging point can save your business a lot of money in the long run, and can even bring in revenue from customers and sta? who wish to charge their EVs.
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