Semiconductor shortages fuel UK fleet electrification Car News

More than a third (35%) of UK fleets are turning to electric vehicles as an alternative if orders are delayed or canceled due to semiconductor shortages, according to new research from mobility observatory Arval.

The company’s 2022 Mobility and Fleet Barometer – based on data from 7,500 interviews with fleet decision-makers in 26 countries – showed that UK businesses already had one of the highest adoption rates for hybrid and electric vehicles.

Most (81%) said they already have them on their fleet, while a further 12% plan to deploy them within the next three years. On average, UK businesses expect electric vehicles to make up 31% of their car fleet by then, compared to 28% for petrol and diesel. Across Europe, the predicted shares were on average 23% for electricity and 52% for petrol or diesel.

Ongoing vehicle supply challenges influence these decisions. A quarter (26%) of UK fleets said this had an impact on deliveries, and the majority of these organizations (83%) are extending the life cycle of vehicles to keep employees mobile. However, more than a third (35%) said supply issues would lead to faster deployment of hybrid and electric vehicles.

Shaun Sadlier, head of Arval’s Mobility Observatory in the UK, said: “This research highlights the shortage of semiconductors, which has become a growing concern for fleets over the past two years. and which, even now, may not be resolved for another year or more.

“Presumably, while awaiting delivery of the vehicle, [fleets] decided to accelerate the movement towards their corporate social responsibility (CSR) objectives by skipping a replacement cycle where they would have probably chosen [a petrol, diesel] or plug-in hybrid and instead opted to go straight to an electric vehicle, which often has shorter delivery times as manufacturers seem to be diverting more of their production to zero-emission vehicles.

Despite supply constraints, the results suggest operators are optimistic about post-pandemic recovery. More than a quarter (27%) said they expect to increase the size of their fleet over the next three years, usually (81%) because their business is about to expand. A fifth of UK respondents (21%) plan to offer company cars to more employees, in order to retain staff.

Sadlier added: “One central fact is clear: as we emerge from the pandemic, company cars and vans remain central to companies’ growth strategies going forward.”

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This notice was published: 2022-05-20 09:01:24

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