Hitachi Believes Fleets Should Be ‘Confident’ About Electrification

Hitachi Believes Fleets Should Be 'Confident' About Electrification

Hitachi Capital Vehicles Solutions, which specialises in vehicle leasing, has urged fleets of all sizes to be confident when it comes to electrification…

Hitachi Urges Confidence 

The leasing company Hitachi Capital Vehicle Solutions is urging fleets both large and small to be confident in electrifying their vehicles. It’s leading a three-year trial (the world’s largest) of commercial electric vehicles called Optimise Prime. It’s designed to shed light on the advantages and disadvantages of adopting electric fleet vehicles. The initial findings will be shared one year into the trial at the Virtual Fleet & Mobility Live event this week. 

Jon Lawes, managing director of the company, said he’s looking forward to sharing some of the trial’s early results. He said, “we look forward to discussing the project learnings from Optimise Prime and the challenges and successes to date of the world’s biggest trial of commercial electric vehicles”. He added, “there is no bigger barrier to electrification than infrastructure. Fleets of all sizes need to be confident they can make the switch and through Optimise Prime, we can address climate change by accelerating the transition to electric vehicles”. Lawes suggested that, if successful, the Optimise Prime trial could save electricity customers £207m and reduce CO2 emissions by 7.2m tons by the end of the decade. 

The Advantages Of Going Green 

There are already numerous advantages in possessing all-electric fleet vehicles. For a start, they offer substantial savings in dispensing with petrol and diesel fuel. Moreover, a reduced number of moving parts means an inevitable reduction in SMR-related expenses. Research has also consistently revealed that customers respond favourably to company’s that use ‘greener’ vehicles and methods of transportation; meaning they can serve as excellent PR and marketing resources. 

Fleet drivers themselves also seem to have positive attitudes towards fleet vehicles. With many models being brand new, they tend to offer a degree of safety, comfort and in-car technology that many other vehicles don’t. They’re also, according to many, easier to drive thanks to excellent torque. Needless to say, they’re also much quieter than diesel and petrol equivalents; that can be a major factor for long-distance drivers. 

However, as Lawes mentioned, charging infrastructure is still patchy in large areas of the country. There are also challenges with using multiple providers, as each requires its own app and payment methods. Finally, electric vehicles are still significantly more pricey at the point of sale; although costs are coming down, largely thanks to improving battery technology. 

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