A new initiative launched this week will recognise UK businesses that are embracing electric vehicles (EVs) as part of a new government and automotive industry initiative run by campaign group Go Ultra Low.
As part of the announcement, Leeds-headquartered AMT Vehicle Rental has been awarded ‘Go Ultra Low Company’ status in recognition of how the organisation has already opened its vehicle fleets to plug-in cars and made a commitment to boosting their uptake over the next five years.
Poppy Welch, Head of Go Ultra Low, said: “We want to encourage other businesses in the UK to follow the example set by AMT Vehicle Group and support initiatives which encourage more people to drive or own an electric vehicle. Not only can they promote cleaner motoring, but there are multiple short- and long-term financial benefits. Thanks to the variety of models available and their cost-saving potential, this is now a realistic and rewarding option.”
Prestige and specialist vehicle rental provider AMT recently made a £200,000 investment in increasing the number of EVs available in its fleet with customers now able to choose from a wide range of energy-efficient models from the high performance Tesla to the Nissan Leaf.
Andy Crinson, General Manager of AMT Vehicle Rental, said: “We hope that by leading the way and being among the first rental companies in the UK to also offer premium electric cars and hybrids, we will play a role in introducing more drivers to the benefits of energy-efficient vehicles – technological advances mean that the latest models offer great performance and design along with significant cost savings.”
Public and private sector organisations that already use EVs, or offer them to employees as company cars, are eligible for Go Ultra Low Company status, providing there’s a commitment for EVs to make up 5% of their vehicle fleet by 2020.
This qualifying criteria mirrors Government forecasts that EVs will represent 5% of total UK new car registrations by the end of the decade. The Government has earmarked £600 million until 2020 to support the plug-in vehicle grant, expand the charging infrastructure, and boost the electric car industry.
Transport Minister Andrew Jones said: “It’s great to see a growing number of British fleets going green and I would encourage other businesses to learn from these Go Ultra Low companies and benefit from the huge fuel and tax savings offered by electric vehicles.
“The UK is a world leader in the uptake of low emission vehicles and our long-term economic plan is investing £600 million by 2020 to improve air quality, create jobs and achieve our goal of every new car and van in the UK being ultra-low emission by 2040.”
January to April sales of plug-in cars reached a record high in the UK, with over 13,065 new EVs registered in the first four months of 2016, an increase of 30%.
Go Ultra Low exists to help UK organisations and motorists understand the benefits, cost savings and capabilities of the raft of electric vehicles on the market. The collaborative campaign is the first of its kind, bringing together a consortium of vehicle manufacturers, Government and the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).