Sticking points to be addressed before en masse EV take up

One of the biggest names in the electrical component industry in the UK, Schneider Electric, has openly welcomed the government’s move to encourage fleets across the country to invest in the ever-expanding range of electric vans that the automotive world is watching patiently. However, there are reservations, as we here on have mentioned time and again, held by many captains of industry that are holding them back from switching carte blanch to the ultra-green carbon-free power.

The fact that the vehicles are likely to attract the cheapest van insurance on the market when they become mainstream aside, there are reasons – and quite powerful motivators – that need addressing before EVs can be incorporated into any fleet, chiefly the lack of plug-in top-up chargers availability anywhere other than back at company HQ.

The average van driver does drive less than sixty miles per day on his route, which is well within the scope of the fully-charged batteries, many of which are boasting up to 100 miles on one charge under certain driving conditions, that are incorporated into the commercial vehicle electric range. The key word, there, is average. Every business has peaks and troughs to arrive at a mean figure for any area of its performance. And a van’s mileage – one of the key factors in a broker deciphering the base cost of a cheap van insurance quote whether you compare online or call direct – is no exception.

Yes, a van driver may drive a consistent 250 miles every week, delivering the average of fifty miles per day, but that figure may well include three days of local runs and two days out into the sticks servicing customers who struggle to find what your business can deliver on its doorstep. It is these excesses that are causing the consternation for many a fleet manager.

On top of the envisaged van insurance saving, the government have conceded three years for fleet operators to qualify for any of the seven now-named vans that appear on their qualification list for up to an £8,000 discount. This is considerably higher – 60% if my maths are what they used to be – than they have offered the domestic market for opting for an electric car, their discount hitting a ceiling at £5,000. Which is all well and good, but there is a crucial factor between the domestic and commercial vehicle markets that could dampen enthusiasm. And it all boils down to putting the cart before the horse and having an extreme national shortage of top-up points anywhere other than in the capital.

Article continues with more insight from Schneider and the team.

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