REMARKETING: Alternative fuels make inroads, but many fleets still sceptical
25 June 2013
LPG in the room
The elephant in the room is LPG. The third choice at the pumps hasn't taken off in the UK but it is still quite widely available and some fleets are able to cash in on the savings that it offers.
They're not common, but the odd ones that appear on the used market do relatively well according to Davies: "LPG vehicles only crop up very rarely and normally in car-derived vans. These perform well because of the fuel cost benefits to the end user."
Amos doesn't agree that LPG vehicles are that successful, though. He claims that initial interest in them was quelled by the advent of clean diesels: "LPG is accepted but has a limited market and as such values suffer. It's been around for some time but plateaued quickly due to cleaner, high-performance diesels."
In terms of getting the most out of a fleet of alternative-fuel vehicles come resale time, the advice is to be as diligent as possible. Range-extenders and electric vehicles in particular operate in the reverse way to commercials in that you can't get away with signs of the vehicle having a hard life, as Henstock explains: "It is likely that buyers will prefer younger, lower-mileage examples, mainly because there could be worries about the reliability of batteries as they get older. As older models reach the market, questions about longevity and even replacing the fuel cells could emerge, so age and mileage can become an issue.
"Fleet managers operating them should make sure their alternatively fuelled vehicles are serviced at the correct intervals during their working lives by the supplying dealer and provide a complete service history at the time of sale."