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2019 ULEZ introduction unlikely to affect most fleets

The introduction of the London Ultra Low Emission Zone 17 months ahead of schedule is likely to have a limited impact on fleets, in particular car operators, says Arval.

 

David Nicholas, fleet consultant

David Nicholas, fleet consultant

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan confirmed last week that the zone will take effect from 8 April 2019 in central London – although the scheme’s possible expansion to cover the North/South Circular roads is still being targeted for 2021.

Although the BVRLA and FTA have spoken out about the scheme’s impact on commercial vehicle operators, Arval is now highlighting that it’s unlikely to have much effect on car fleets.

Vehicles will need to a minimum of Euro 6-compliant for diesels and Euro 4 for petrols, but with Euro 6 emission standards having come into effect for all vehicles from September 2015, even fleets running four-year replacement cycles should be broadly in the clear.

David Nicholas, fleet consultant, added that there may be some impact on van fleets running on longer cycles but said: “Even bearing this mind, the number of vehicles affected is likely to be a relatively small percentage of your fleet and can probably be managed by swapping some into areas unaffected by the ULEZ regulation.”

Smaller vehicle operators, who are less easily able to switch their vehicles, together with fleets running specialist vehicles on longer replacement cycles such as emergency services and local authorities, are the most likely to be impacted by the early introduction of the ULEZ, he added.

Nicholas also said that although five other cities have been mandated to develop low emission zones, they have much more localised problems with air quality. He added: “It will be interesting to see if they arrive at different solutions to London.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.