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Watts The Problem?

Watts The Problem?

Are you an early adopter? Do you have to have all the latest tech’, appliances and fashion long before everyone else? We really should be thanking you. You’re the brave souls who test all this new stuff well in advance of the day when we all commit to bringing it into our own lives. You find all the bugs, answer all the questions and have to endure the costs. All before the, much better and cheaper updated version is released only months later, and we all jump on board.

But this isn’t the case in all areas of life. For the delivery and haulage sector, the behaviours of the early adopter are yet to be seen. According to a new study by Rivus Fleet Solutions and the AA, it seems that fleet operators are acutely aware of the need to adapt to low emission vehicles, but many are still settling for “more cost-effective” Euro-6 diesel vehicles.

Barriers To Entry

The study took in over 500 car and light CV fleet decision-makers and looked into why the adoption of electric vehicles (EV) is so slow. And it’s the same familiar issues holding back investments in EV — those of charging time, charging location, and driver training.

The report found that 89% of fleets are still using diesel in 2019, an increase of 2% over 2018. Almost three-quarters of fleet owners believe they’ll still be using diesel in 2025.

Happily, the longer-term trend is more encouraging. Nearly 60% of those surveyed expect to have EVs in their fleet by 2025. That’s almost double those in use today. In addition, over half of those surveyed think drivers will ultimately prefer to drive EVs in their work.

A Rocky Road Ahead

The drag on EV investment comes from high initial costs, lack of infrastructure, maintenance expertise and inconsistencies in how to pay charging fees. That said the report also discovered that 67% of fleet managers agree the range and quality of EVs that are available has improved during 2019, which is encouraging.

Considering the wider delivery environment, the researchers enquired about attitudes to CAZ schemes. They found that 70% of respondents saw a lack of consistency between different UK CAZ proposals and yet only 11% are against the implementation of these clean air initiatives. Interestingly, 24% of fleet operators are looking to move to regions where there are no CAZ schemes underway.

Always Fully Charged

The picture it seems is mixed. EV awareness is high, but adoption remains low. However, planning is most certainly required. Not only is there the many proposed CAZ roll outs to contend with, but also issues like the introduction of WLTP standards in April 2020. All are likely to further muddy the waters and apply more pressure for fleets to accelerate their introduction of EV technology.

There is, of course, an alternative. The use of solar-assisted vehicles, like Truckcraft’s TRAILAR-enabled products, are a logical middle way. Not only do they reduce harmful emissions, but they also save up to 5% in annual fuel costs and are supremely reliable by design. They offer the perfect bridge between the present and the future and will make a big difference to operators who need to balance consumer expectations with operational costs.

While it’s always difficult to see into the future, one thing’s for sure: you’ll always be fully charged in a solar-assisted Truckcraft delivery van.

For more information on our future-focused delivery trucks and vans, please contact the Truckcraft Bodies sales team on 0161 304 9404. Alternatively, email or

Published: Dec 16

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