A new whitepaper underlines the significance of light commercial vehicles (LCVs) to UK businesses, according to Europcar Vans & Trucks.
The research conducted amongst UK businesses prior to the pandemic, found that more than 58% of UK businesses use their vans every day of the week, with another 23% using them for between four and six days per week, with dependence also requiring high levels of flexibility.
As UK businesses contend with a more unsettled economic landscape, the need for flexibility when it comes to accessing vehicles makes commercial sense, argues Europcar.
Indeed, the Europcar research identified the evolving trend towards ‘usership’ rather than ‘ownership’. More than a quarter of businesses said they favour long-term rental as a method of accessing commercial vehicles and vehicle ‘usership’, rather than ownership, which is the preferred option for almost 20% who use short term rental solutions.
The Europcar research also identified some of the biggest headaches for commercial fleet managers. After road congestion, vehicle condition dominated, with 42% citing it as their second biggest worry.
As fleet managers juggle multiple vehicles, driven by many different drivers, the availability of vehicles was an issue for 40% of the decision makers questioned, with nearly three quarters (71%) admitting to having ‘spare’ vans in order to mitigate the risk of being left without a vehicle.
And the bigger the firm, the more likely they were to have ‘just in case’ vehicles: 92% of companies with 500-plus employees.
Stuart Russell, LCV sales director at Europcar Vans & Trucks, said: “Undoubtedly, 2020 was particularly challenging for companies – whether that meant a reduction in business or having to gear up quickly to meet rapidly increasing demand.
“That’s why flexibility and the need to minimise long-term financial commitments are going to be the cornerstones for businesses that want to remain competitive in 2021 and beyond.
“For fleet managers, being able to call on reliable and appropriate commercial vehicles as and when they are needed will be key.”
Russell suggests that long-term rental goes some way to answering the challenges fleets face by offering a “cost effective, ‘pick up and put down’ solution of up-to-date, well maintained and low emission vehicles”.
To download the whitepaper from Europcar Vans & Trucks click here.