Electric SUVs are becoming increasingly popular among corporate users, La Libre Belgique reported, citing a study conducted by Arval, BNP Paribas’ corporate leasing division. Their number may soon grow as fossil-fuelled vehicles quickly fall out of favour as company vehicles.
“Seven vehicles in the top ten are electric SUVs,” Yves Ceurstemont of Arval Consulting notes. “Taxation is a major reason for choosing an electric vehicle, and manufacturers are carefully scrutinising the wishes of the general public on a global scale.”
Driven by environmental concerns?
However, it seems that it isn't so much the green credentials that are pushing the popularity of these vehicles so much as their size. According to the rental group, over the last ten years there has been a clear preference among corporate users for SUV-type vehicles.
Only in recent years have major car companies begun to make electric versions of these larger cars, which is why electric vehicles are now appearing in the company car sector.
The plug-in hybrids included within the top ten company cars in Belgium are also SUV-sized. Drivers end up driving around 20% of the time using the engine, which limits the cost for the company and entitles them to certain tax incentives.
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According to the survey, the top ten company cars ordered by the company were the Mercedes EQA, VW Golf, BMW iX3, Audi Q4 e-tron, Volvo XC40 PHEV, KIA EV6, Volvo XC40 BEV, Hyundai Tucson PHEV, Mercedes EQB, and the VW ID4.
However, corporate preference for SUVs may not be the most economical option. Larger electric vehicles have a shorter range and battery life.
“From a purely scientific point of view, SUVs are generally counterproductive in terms of ecological driving and autonomy, because of their shapes,” Ceurstemont said.
“It is also for this reason that the Volkswagen Golf is so popular with those who don’t have the option to opt for an electric vehicle. This car offers less air resistance than a comparable SUV, which helps to reduce CO2 emissions."