Mobility solutions unlikely to replace company cars, fleets say

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Interest in mobility solutions is increasing but few businesses would be willing to give up their company cars and use a mobility solution instead.

Shaun Sadlier, head of Arval Mobility Observatory

That’s according to new research from Arval that finds the company car looks set to remain the core transport method for the foreseeable future.

The research, part of the 2019 edition of Arval Mobility Observatory which saw some 3,930 fleets surveyed, saw fleets asked whether they would fully or in part give up their vehicle for a range of alternatives; just 7% of fleets said they would probably or certainly opt instead for car sharing, 9% for ride sharing, 8% for a mobility budget, 11% for a private lease vehicle and 7% for mid-term rental.

However, there are often differences between smaller and larger organisations when it comes to attitudes to mobility products. For example, while just 3% of businesses with fewer than 10 employees would opt for car sharing while in those with 1,000 or more employees, this grows to 14%.

There are also signs of widespread interest in mobility solutions. Car sharing is already being used or considered for use with the next three years by 31% of respondents, ride sharing by 45%, mobility budgets by 21%, private lease by 23% and medium term rental by 22%.

The research also looks at reasons why drivers are unlikely to want to give up their company cars. They are ease of motoring (mentioned by 16% of respondents), not having to finance their own vehicle (14%), no risk of ownership (10%) and delivery of a new car every 3-4 years (8%).

Shaun Sadlier, head of Arval Mobility Observatory in the UK, said: “There is a lot of discussion in corporate circles about mobility solutions at the moment and our research shows that interest is high. As a provider, we believe that there is considerable potential for these products.

“While decision makers and employees in organisations are interested in mobility solutions, it appears that the vast majority see them as supplementing or being a partial alternative to the traditional fleet.

“The reasons for this are simple, we believe. Some of them are revealed in our research by showing how much employees value having a company car and the benefits it brings. The other is that, when a typical multi-stop journey is undertaken, a car is literally the only practical option.

“A mixed provision model is one that we have been saying for some time is the most likely to develop in the majority of businesses, where a range of mobility solutions are used alongside company cars with employees using the most appropriate form of transport for each journey.

“Our belief is that, over the next few years, as more and more fleet managers become mobility managers, one of the most interesting developments will be the process that businesses undergo in learning how to use mobility options in the most effective manner.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for 16 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day. As Business Editor, Natalie ensures the group websites and newsletters are updated with the latest news.