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Electric vehicles - driving home a capital case for firms

We’re convinced that electric vehicles make economic sense  right now – and we’re not afraid to say it. It seems that the message is getting through, too.

After providing free consultancy to fresh fruit delivery company, Fruit 4 London, through our Plugged-in Fleets Initiative, it has decided to take the plunge and make its entire fleet electric.

The review of its fleet revealed possible savings of £9,000 per vehicle, and the company wasted no time in helping people get their five a day in a lower-carbon way –  by getting  its EV overhaul under way.

It helped, of course, that this is a company already open to the idea of going electric, with two existing plug-ins in its fleet. But there is plenty of demand to be part the scheme from other parties, as Caroline Watson from our transport team explains:

More than half of the places have already been allocated, from SMEs -like Fruit 4 London to larger organisations such as Iceland and Carillion- for free analysis through PIFI 100, which clearly shows that the interest in the plug-in vehicle market is growing. Early adopters like Fruit 4 London have already demonstrated a strong business case for the adoption of electric vehicles, and is setting an example for others to follow.”

For companies in London it is often a no-brainer: on top of lower running costs, accelerated capital allowances and the plug-in vehicle grant, they also free themselves from the congestion charge.

Then there’s the vital fact that electric vehicle infrastructure in the city is coming up strong, with 1,300 publicly-available charge points. The latter is a point we made recently when pointing out the savings that could be made by turning to electric vans.

London businesses could collectively save £200million by swapping just a tenth of existing vans for electric ones. So, are these the beginnings of the rise of the Green Van Man? The more businesses that get to know the benefits, the sooner it will happen.

Find out more about free electric vehicle consultancy through EST’s Plugged-in Fleets Initiative 100.

Gary Hartley is Energy Saving Trust's expert blogger. He has extensive experience researching and writing on a number of topics, with particular expertise in sustainable energy, policy, literature and sport. As well as providing regular blog content, Gary has also been published in numerous magazines and journals.

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