FLEET and business vehicle operators could save more than £17 million a year in London Congestion Charge Zone payments by switching to electric or plug-in hybrid cars and vans, according to new research by Citroen.
Analysis of Transport for London data obtained via a Freedom of Information request revealed that, despite a freeze in payments last year - from March 23 to May 17 due to the Covid-19 pandemic - businesses still spent more than £1.4 million per month to enter and operate in central London.
In June, Transport for London introduced temporary measures to the Congestion Charge Zone increasing the daily fee from £11.50 to £15, with the charge applicable seven days a week.
Entry to the Congestion Charge Zone in London is free for all vehicles that meet the current Euro 6 emissions criteria, emit less than 75g/km of CO2and have a minimum 20-mile zero emissions range.
Research by Citroën reveals Transport for London collected £17,422,351 in business payments for use of the Congestion Charge Zone between October 2019 and September 2020.
In contrast, businesses switching to 100 per cent electric vehicles enjoy free access to the Congestion Charge Zone.
Citroen has its ë-Dispatch van and a new ë-C4 compact family hatchback among its fleet of electric offerings and both have ranges of more than 200 miles.
According to Citroen's analysis, the total cost of ownership for a new e -Dispatch van could be less than 50 per cent that for an equivalent diesel van.
Eurig Druce, managing director of Citroen UK, said: "Electric vehicles such as New Ã«-C4 and Ã«-Dispatch van are ideal for business and fleet users. Not only do they suit a variety of driving conditions, their zero emissions capability results in no Benefit-in-Kind (BIK) payments. As our latest research shows, businesses also stand to make significant savings in other areas - including Congestion Charge Zone payments."
The e-Dispatch is priced from £25,053 without VAT and the new e-C4 starts from £29,180 after the current Plug-in Car Grant.
Until October 25, 2021, Citroen's new C5 Aircross SUV Hybrid will also be eligible for free entry into the London Congestion Charge Zone - thanks to CO2emissions as low as 32g/km and its zero-emissions range of up to 34 miles.