European companies appear to be confident in terms of fleet growth potential for the coming years.
The balance between the fleet managers who expect an increase and the fleet managers who expect a decrease is equal to 21%. Countries with the highest fleet growth potentials are UK, Belgium, Poland and Luxembourg, on the other side, Portugal and the Netherlands appears to be the less optimistic. Higher confidence level are reported for larger fleets.
In 2016, fleet managers still notice an increasing trend in terms of usage duration of their passengers cars and light commercial vehicles in fleet. More fleet managers have reported an increase in 2016 than in 2015 (+5 points for PCs and +4points for LCVs).
Fleet managers report that diesel engine account for 82% of their passenger vehicle fleet. Only a small decrease is expected within the next 5 years. Larger decreases are expected in large fleets, in large companies, in France and Belgium.
Nearly half of the European companies have already implemented or expect to acquire vehicle with alternative / new energies (at least one of the following technology: Hybrid, Plug-in hybrid, Compressed Natural Gas, Liquefied Petroleum Gas, Electric Vehicle, Fuel Cell Electric / Hydrogen). The most attractive energies in 2016 for companies are Hybrid, Plug-in hybrid and Full electric vehicle. Specificities are seen by countries like the high penetration of CNG in Italy or LPG in Poland that could be explained by the incentives given by the government in order to develop these technologies.
In terms of financing method, larger the companies are, the more they are to use Operating leasing as their main financing method. However, proportion of companies using self purchase or car credit decrease when the company size increase. On large and very large segment, we notice in 2016 an increase trend of Self-purchase (+3 points compared with 2015) and a decreasing trend of Finance leasing (-5 points). Compared with 2013, Operating leasing has recorded an increasing trend: +4 points in 3 years.
Higher penetration rate of Operating leasing are reached in France, Spain, Italy and Luxembourg. On the other side, we record high penetration of Self purchase in countries like Switzerland, Czech Republic, Poland and to a lesser extent Germany and UK.
Penetration of Telematics has slightly increased from 28% in 2013 to 35% in 2016. Most advanced countries on Telematics subject are Czech Republic, Poland, Spain and UK. Telematics are mainly used in 2016 as a vehicle locator / tracker but compared to 2013, the following uses have significantly increased: ‘reduce fuel consumption’, ‘improve the safety of the drivers’ and ‘monitor driving behaviours’.
Fleet managers are interested in mobile apps: 6 out of 10 fleets managers have mentioned to consider mobiles apps as useful. Portugal, Spain, Poland and Czech Republic appear to be the most interested countries. Apps that send alerts about vehicles conditions and remind you when to renew them are the most attractive apps tested in this survey. No major differences are reported between medium and large fleets.
Only 38% of the fleets managers are interested in a service proven to reduce fleet cost by using Telematics. Data privacy issue is the main factor that hinders the willingness to use such app.
Regarding safety issues, fleet managers consider that autonomous emergency brake is the most important option to be included in passenger cars and light commercial vehicles. They also consider the following options as important (essential or at least useful): Night vision system, adaptive cruise control, line change warning and adaptive light control. No major difference between fleet size are reported.
Less than 1 out of 2 European fleet managers have mentioned autonomous or semi-autonomous vehicles will be easily accepted by their employees. This proves that this technology will need to manage users’ fear and lack of knowledge before being adopted. No difference are noted between fleet size.
Car sharing appears to be a solution that could expand in companies even if, according to fleet managers, employees that already have a company car won’t be ready to give up for alternative mobility (as a company car is clearly considered as a reward). According to car policy managers interviewed, the youngest generation will more easily accept car sharing, and mobility budget could be considered as a reward as it is currently the case for company cars. This should help the expansion of car sharing.