Retail demand limps behind fleet BEV registrations

Nearly half of the company cars delivered in the first quarter of 2023 were battery electric vehicles (BEV), according to the latest BVRLA Leasing Outlook Report data.

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The Report highlights that BEVs were responsible for 49% of new business contract hire cars, but the sustainability star of the show was the booming salary sacrifice market – up 41% year-on-year - with 91% of registrations pure electric. These figures are in stark contrast to the retail market, where BEV sales were responsible for 16% of new sales and 1% of used purchases in the first quarter.

“We have had a two-tier transition to zero emission motoring for some time and this growing gap between the fleet and retail sectors’ appetite for decarbonisation could put the 2030 phase-out target in jeopardy,” said BVRLA Director of Corporate Affairs, Toby Poston.

“All these fleet BEV registrations will hit the used market in three or four years’ time. The last year has already shown an increasing imbalance between the fast-growing supply of used electric cars and demand that isn’t keeping up. We are working with policymakers, members and colleagues from across the industry to address these used market barriers.”

Diving further into the detail of Q1 leasing figures reveals more winners and losers amid the general sense of a plateauing market. Business contract hire remains positive, with the van sector performing particularly strongly – BVRLA members now operate 100,000 more vans than they did pre-pandemic.

Read or download the report in full: BVRLA Leasing Outlook