With new government legislation banning petrol and diesel cars brought forward to 2035, the government needs to work on a “roadmap” with fleet and leasing industries to help achieve this goal, according to Meridian Vehicle Solutions.

Managing director at Meridian Phil Jerome said the government announcement has created a number of potential pitfalls that could harm all parts of the sector and damage the prospect of adopting electric vehicles.

He said: “The 2035 deadline is close enough that it means everyone working in the fleet and wider motor industries needs to be able to plan progress on a year-by-year basis. Much of this is because motor manufacturers are simply unable to change production quickly.Really, we need to have a good idea of where the Government expects us to be, almost on a year-by-year basis, and for the industry to consult on how realistic those plans might be. Just having a present start point and 2035 end point is not sufficient information.”

“Why? A number of reasons. The kind of increases in penetration that we are going to see need to be paralleled step-by-step by national improvements in charger capacity – not just at work and at home but among car dealers and everyone who works in remarketing.”

Jerome also said the industry needs to have an idea of taxation plans.

“However, how does the Government see those EV BIK tax rates changing over time and presumably, eventually reaching a similar kind of level to those we now see for petrol and diesel cars today? The same questions also surround VED and fuel duty,” he said.

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“Unless a degree of structured decision is in place, making around all of this made known as soon as possible, there is the possibility of some degree of chaos and resulting substantial financial damage. The motor industry – and the fleets that form half of its customer base in the UK – are not fast fashion where products can be changed in a fortnight. Planning what will happen in the middle of this decade is already well underway,” he concluded.