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WLTP warning for fleets

Date: 07 August 2018   |   Author: Rachel Boagey

The introduction of the Worldwide harmonised Light vehicles Test Procedure (WLTP) on vehicle CO2 emissions and mpg data has been described as having a "seismic" impact on fleets. 

With the introduction of WLTP in 2020, Venson Automotive Solutions is urging businesses to get to grips with what the new test procedure means for them and their fleet drivers. 

"Many businesses rely on their vehicles as key assets that support their core business operations and Venson's white paper highlights the need for organisations to understand the impact of the new emissions targets sooner rather than later," the white paper reads. 

WLTP is the replacement for the long-established New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) vehicle testing procedure. The changes will test cars and light vans in more 'real-world' style conditions. This means CO2 emissions are rising and mpg reducing on some models, compared with the current figures quoted under the NEDC test process.

In April 2020, the UK Government will introduce a tax monitoring system based on WLTP CO2 values. This will follow a transition period from this September with manufacturers publishing figures obtained under WLTP testing, but converted back to a comparable NEDC value, known as an NEDC-correlated figure. As a result, these figures will be higher than under the previous NEDC test cycle, which means motorists will have to pay higher vehicle-related tax. Additionally, vehicle list prices may rise as manufacturers introduce technological improvements to counter any rise in CO2 emissions and reductions in mpg.

Manufacturers are already taking action to manage the negative impact of CO2 emissions, including the move towards WLTP. This may see the withdrawal of specific engines or options and re-engineering some vehicles to improve emissions, which in turn could slow down production and make it difficult for manufacturers to meet orders.

Danielle Tilley, business development director of Venson Automotive Solutions, said, "What is absolutely certain is that if vehicle CO2 figures have not been influential in the compilation of company car policies to date, they are now fast becoming critical. Meanwhile, not only is CO2 data vital, but those 'must have' optional extras beloved of many company car drivers may be confined to the dustbin come April 2020. That's because, for the first time, options will be included in the CO2/mpg testing process.

"WLTP is here and organisations must understand its impact on company car policies and fleet choice. They also need to understand the timeline for the full implementation of WLTP and the related Real Driving Emissions (RDE) test, as well as getting to grips with how both WLTP and RDE impact on all aspects of vehicle-related taxation between 2018 and 2020. Businesses need to make sure they are prepared for further change once the government announces the shape of all vehicle-related taxation from April 2020."