REMARKETING: Alternative fuels make inroads, but many fleets still sceptical
25 June 2013
It's that acceptance that makes or breaks an alternative fuel with used buyers, which is an issue Toyota is acutely aware of, as the Japanese manufacturer has been dispatching hybrids into the trade since the first-generation Prius appeared in 1997.
The company's manager for vehicle remarketing services in the UK, Iain McCall, says: "The main challenge we currently have in selling used hybrids is lack of awareness. The environmental and financial benefits of purchasing a new hybrid for business use, both in terms of the driver's BIK and company write-down allowance, are well documented. However, the used car benefits of these vehicles are less well known.
"Hybrid vehicles carry a price premium, due to the fact that the initial strong RV is carried through from the new car to the used car. However, we need to make more customers aware of the value aspect."
The general consensus among remarketing experts is that hybrids have reached the point where they're a safe bet. Yes, prices can fluctuate, but fleet operators can do much worse on the RV front, which is something that is expected to remain the same, as John Davies, chairman of the Vehicle Remarketing Association, says: "Values [for hybrids] will stay fairly consistent, especially in this market when supply in general of used cars is relatively low. In the future, the supply and demand economics will kick in and if there are too many in the market prices may fall, if supply remains limited prices will stay strong."