Fleet operators want financial incentives to try alternative fuels

Hand on a green fuel pump

Commercial fleet operators want Government incentives to make the switch to alternative fuels, according to a report from Asset Alliance Group.

Its latest ‘Industry Monitor Report’ shows that 41% of operators are put off by the initial up-front costs – one of the top concerns for commercial vehicle operators over the next 12 months.   

Asset Alliance Group CEO, Willie Paterson, said: “As we emerge from the toughest set of circumstances in our lifetime, we felt the time was right to take the pulse of the road transport sector again. 

“This year’s report is our most in-depth to date, and we have received a record number of responses. The results are really intriguing, and there is a lot to be optimistic about.” 

The report, which is based on a survey of 600 fleet decision-makers, reveals critical insights into the health of the road transport industry following the aftermath of Covid-19 and Brexit. 

Asset Alliance asked operators if they would be looking to acquire any alternative fuel HGVs in the next three years: one in five (20%) were looking to do so, while almost a third (29%) had no plans now, and more than half (51%) had no current projects, but this might change.  

Eight out of 10 respondents said they were not yet planning to move away from diesel, with cost the biggest barrier.

However, some 52% said they would be more inclined to try alternative fuels if the Government had a financial incentive, such as reduced tax or a scrappage scheme.   

More than half (51%) of operators would also be encouraged if the national refuelling infrastructure was improved. Operators would also be keen to see non-financial incentives being explored for modern technology. 

For those looking to make the switch, Gas-powered trucks came out on top, with 8% looking at liquated natural gas (LNG) and 6% considering compressed natural gas (CNG).   

A further 9% planned to plug into battery electric vehicle technology, while 6% explored range-extended electric options.  

Drop-in fuels such as hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO) and gas to liquid (GTL), as well as hydrogen, were also being looked at by 2% of operators exploring alternatives to diesel.   

The report is free to download and can be accessed here

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