Attaining environmental benefits and lower cost of ownership are driving more commercial fleets to electrify, according to a new study by UPS and GreenBiz. In the “Curve Ahead: The Future of Fleet Electrification” report, industry leaders identify the main motivations and barriers to electrification, as well as strategies to move the commercial electric vehicle market from niche to mainstream.
The top motivation to go electric for 83% of large businesses surveyed is sustainability and environmental goals. A lower total cost of ownership—factoring in both direct and indirect costs and savings over the life of the vehicle—is the second biggest driver, cited by 64% of respondents.
In addition to the fuel savings, electric vehicles typically require less maintenance than traditional internal combustion engine vehicles, which means lower maintenance costs.
Despite an appetite for electrification, many fleet operators face challenges. Fifty-five percent of respondents cited the initial purchase price of electric commercial vehicles as the top barrier. Forty-four precent view inadequate onsite charging infrastructure as a barrier and 92% advise their facility is not “very well equipped” to accommodate commercial charging needs. Yet the study also found less than half of the companies surveyed are working with governments or utilities to address charging infrastructure.
Aaron is an automotive journalist living in Wyoming, USA. His background includes technology, mechanics, commercial vehicles, and new vehicle evaluations. Aaron is a member of several automotive media groups and writes for many well-known publications.