What the majority of fleet decision-makers now think of electric vehicles

LIVONIA, Michigan –

The potential of electric vehicles appears to be of great interest to fleet operators.

On Tuesday, behavioral and analytics consultancy Escalent released the latest findings from its Fleet Advisory Hub, a platform designed to explore the needs, expectations and emotions of commercial vehicle and fleet decision makers.

The company said fleet makers are so optimistic about the promise of electric vehicles for their fleets in the coming years that nearly two-thirds (65%) are already buying electric vehicles.

However, data from the Fleet Advisory Hub showed that the underlying operational and infrastructure issues, including private charging funding, variable routing patterns, and the calculation of electric vehicle operating costs, remain. among the most significant barriers to widespread adoption.

Escalent explained that its latest report offers a “clear” glimpse into the opportunity that fleet and light and medium / heavy commercial vehicle manufacturers have in the coming years, as 57% of fleet decision makers plan to replace their vehicles. in the next three years and an overwhelming majority of them (65%) are proactively purchasing EV solutions.

Additionally, with few electrified products on the market today, Escalent said the pipeline to meet future fleet demand is plentiful, so competing brands need to take an aggressive approach with fleet decision makers. to answer questions, address concerns and gain favor. of this key group entering the electric vehicle market.

“Vehicle manufacturers and charging infrastructure companies are looking to determine what their best chance yet to trigger a wave of purchases of electric vehicles for fleet use, marking a critical crossroads on the way to the future. Widespread adoption of the technology, ”said Michael Schmall, Automotive & Vice President Mobility at Escalent.

“Brands that reach the top will gain an edge by finding solutions to unique problems for fleet applications, including significant operational infrastructure challenges,” Schmall continued in a press release.

The latest Fleet Advisory Hub study indicated that paying for charging solutions is high on the list of concerns of fleet decision makers:

• 82% of users finance their private charging infrastructure and 68% of buyers expect

• 32% of users report higher than expected private charging infrastructure costs

• 29% of fleets allow employees to pick up and store vehicles from home, adding another layer of complexity for the implementation of a robust charging infrastructure

Escalent pointed out that manufacturers also face a significant lack of knowledge and information when describing the benefits of EV applications.

According to the latest Fleet Advisory Hub study, more than half (57%) of decision makers operate fleets with varying routing patterns and other operational considerations that require extensive usage data to implement a viable electrified program.

In addition, the study showed that 42% of operators understand that there are unique EV factors, although they do not know them well enough to calculate the total cost of ownership (TCO) of this new application in their operations. fleet.

According to another Fleet Advisory Hub study, total cost of ownership is one of the main factors influencing the decision to adopt a fleet decision maker.

“To take a leading position in the electric vehicle adoption race among ready and enthusiastic fleet decision-makers, product manufacturers and service providers must proactively develop catering solutions that mitigate upfront costs and the knowledge burden for buyers, ”Escalent said.

“Regardless of the electric vehicle itself, simply offering a standard or standard infrastructure solution will lead to ongoing challenges, frustration, and in the worst case scenario, technology or brand defection.” , the company continued.

Escalent noted that its Fleet advice center is one of the largest collections of information available on commercial and fleet decision makers. Currently, nearly 10,000 fleets totaling more than 800,000 vehicles are represented.

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