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Green credentials taking precedence over company car model and grade, says FleetCheck

Company car choice hierarchies could become less important in the near future, as employees place less focus on model and grade and more on eco friendliness.

Peter Golding, managing director, FleetCheck

Peter Golding, managing director, FleetCheck

So says FleetCheck, which believes that changing employee priorities are causing less interest in the car as an indication of managerial status.

Peter Golding, managing director, said: “Part of this is simply attitudinal. There appears to be less emphasis among younger people when it comes to seeing the car as an extension of their personality or a reflection of their personal success. It is more of a means of transport. That doesn’t mean that they don’t want a ‘nice’ car – they probably do – but the model and grade is less of a priority.

“Similarly, they may well be more concerned about the car from an environmental point of view and their priorities about the vehicle may well be different from a more traditional company car driver. Certainly, there are indications that larger numbers of younger people are more interested in zero-emission vehicles than outright performance, for example.”

Golding said that developing financial pressures – including changes in Benefit-in-Kind – were also playing an important part, helping to further reduce interest in the kind of faster, bigger-engine vehicles that have dominated the top-end of choice lists.

He added: “It is arguable that what we are seeing is the final stages of the company car sector moving away from perk to job-need cars, something that has been underway for a while. Really, anyone who is interested in an expensive, powerful perk car has probably already long since shifted to take a cash option that is now channelled into a PCP or PCH.”

Golding said the trend was a positive one for fleets, enabling more effort to be concentrated on maximising efficiency.

“Businesses want their fleet transport to be as cost-effective as possible. The gradual removal of the requirement to provide a hierarchy of choice that includes, by design, models that are less efficient, is very much a move to be welcomed. It allows the company car to fulfil its primary role as the best transport solution available in many instances,” he finished.

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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.