Cheaper diesel makes comparison between petrol and diesel vans increasingly complicated. However, the Fuelcard People’s group marketing manager, Steve Clarke, argues that this misses the key issue in fleet procurement; day-to-day fuel pricing is not the main factor to be considered.
Clarke suggests that pump pricing is a “red herring”: regardless of whether a van, or another LCV, runs on diesel or petrol, it should be refuelling at up to 4p per litre below pump prices with fuel cards.
Total cost of ownership, or whole-life costing, has to be the key issue in van comparisons.
For the first time since 2001, diesel became cheaper than petrol this summer. Although diesel’s better mpg figures may suggest an obvious choice, any comparison will be meaningless unless every cost in a van’s lifetime is considered.
Road tax, maintenance, servicing, repairs, tyres and other consumables should be taken into account, By keeping track of everything spent through a vehicles life with a fleet, fleet managers can make meaningful evaluation of one van against another.
Clarke argues that this can put fleet managers in a more powerful position of negotiation when procuring future vehicles.
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