These days, there’s a lot of pressure on businesses to start taking more care when it comes to the environment.  Carbon emissions and wasted energy are hot topics in environmental debates, and the legal requirements that result can often seem like extra hassle and financially burdensome.

But going green also has its perks.  The increased governmental pressure comes with its own financial incentives – and if you want to start saving some money, you’ll want to get involved.

Here are a few of the ways using ultra-low emission vehicles for your business can reduce your costs.

Road Tax

The Vehicle Excise Duty, also known as road tax, is calculated from the amount of CO2 your van kicks out.

But if your business uses vans that produce less than 75g of CO2 per kilometre, you won’t have to pay any road tax on them at all – which could save you hundreds of pounds per van, per year.

Government Grants

If you’re about to upgrade or expand your fleet, it’s worth weighing up the costs first.  While some models of electric or hybrid vans can seem pricey when compared to their conventional counterparts, you’ll get a discount of 20% (up to £8,000) if you choose an eligible ultra-low emission model.

The best part?  There are no criteria for you to meet and no extra paperwork to earn the discount.  Just make sure you choose an eligible vehicle and the dealer should take care of everything.

First Year Capital Allowances

When you invest in a new van, you might find you can write off a certain percentage of the cost of the van against your profits.  So far, so good.

But did you know that the amount you can write off usually depends on the emissions of the van?

For conventional vehicles producing more than 130g of CO2 per kilometre, it could be as little as 8%.  But with a vehicle that’s classed as ultra-low, you may be able to write off 100% of the cost. That could be a big tax saving that could really start to add up when you’re buying a few new vans.

The long-Term Costs

While it’s true that the initial cost of an electric or hybrid vehicle might be higher than a similar petrol or diesel one, the numbers after a few years tell a completely different story.

According to Go Ultra Low, you can expect to pay just £1,449 to fuel an electric car for the first 3 years, compared to £4,716 for a petrol one.

And that’s before you start to factor in everything else.  While a 100% electric car could set you back £2,753 in running costs over the first 3 years, a petrol car could leave you with more than £6,000 of expenses over the same period.

Get Charged Less For Charging

Unfortunately, there’s currently no government funding to help with installing charge points at private sector workplaces.  But there is a considerable discount for anyone who wants to install one at home, including those who drive company vans.

The government’s Office for Low Emissions Vehicles (OLEV) can cover 75% of the installation cost of a charging point at home, up to a maximum of £900.

On top of that, some vehicle manufacturers or charge point suppliers might even offer to pay the remaining 25%. Just ask your dealer when you’re shopping for vans.

And even if you do end up paying the full installation price for a charge point at your workplace, the reduced fuel costs of using electric or hybrid vans could more than make up for the extra expense – especially if you get a good price on your business electricity.

Have you seen substantial savings since you made the switch to a low-emission fleet?  If so, let us know on LinkedIn or Google+.

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