Around a decade ago, diesel was seen as the future of the company car. Diesel cars were cheaper to run and more environmentally friendly than their petrol-powered counterparts. Therefore, it was only natural that companies and consumers were switching from petrol to diesel vehicles in droves. That all changed when news of the diesel emissions scandal broke. Suddenly, diesel cars lost their green reputation and companies looking to burnish their environmental credentials had to start looking elsewhere. This has caused massive changes in the types of cars that are manufactured and added to fleets. In this article, we’ll consider how long a future diesel cars have, if they have one at all.
There are two reasons why diesel cars are quickly falling out of favour with fleet managers. The first is that governments are suddenly moving to tax diesel vehicles more punitively, on the basis that their emissions are more damaging to the environment than had previously been realised. The second is that manufacturers are quickly reducing the number of diesel vehicles that they release into the market. This means that fleets, which generally buy new cars directly from the factory and sell them on after a few years, are quickly disposing of the diesel cars that they already have and not buying new ones.
This means that diesel cars are quickly moving to the private market. With substantially reduced resale values, some buyers are using them as an opportunity to purchase models that they would otherwise be unable to afford. On the other hand, this generally comes with the caveat that the vehicle will be more highly taxed in the future, as governments work to remove polluting diesel vehicles from the streets as quickly as they can. Put simply, the future for diesel vehicles in company fleets is a bleak one.