Lex company car drivers reduce annual carbon emissions faster than retail motorists

Company car drivers are positively doing their bit for the environment according to new figures released by Lex, the UK’s leading contract hire and leasing company.

When analysing new car deliveries on its fleet from an environmental aspect between 2000 and the end of 2006, the Lex fleet has seen drivers reduce their annual CO2 emissions by nearly one tonne per annum (0.96 tonnes) on a typical contract (3 years/60,000 miles).

On the Lex fleet of 178,000 vehicles, that equates to an average CO2 reduction of nearly 171,000 tonnes of carbon per annum.

Whereas in 2000 Lex saw a broad dispersion of CO2 values with an average tax banding of 185g/km there is now a clear concentration at the 155g/km level. That equates to a fall of six tax bands over just six years.

The work car makers have completed to introduce lower CO2 cars into their range and make them attractive to the company motorists is very evident. Lex now has cars on its fleet with a CO2 output as low as 110g/km, whereas six years ago the lowest polluting car was at 130g/km.

“CO2 levels are obviously one of the key reasons for choosing a company car now, not just its size and practicality. It’s clear that company motorists are helping reduce their impact on the environment because it reduces their tax liability, but it’s now time for retail drivers to take CO2 just as seriously when making their purchasing decision,” explained Jon Walden, Managing Director of Lex.

Much of the CO2 reduction has been caused by drivers choosing smaller cars with fuel efficient diesel engines. Diesel now accounts for 72% of all Lex new cars compared with nearer 40% five years ago.

Hybrid cars have also started to appear on the Lex fleet over the past three years, with the Honda Civic and Toyota Prius in particular making their mark with green company car drivers.

The Lex figures compare with those issued by the SMMT recently which showed the average CO2 emissions of cars bought by consumers were at 167g/km, 12g/km higher than its own fleet figures.

“These figures reinforce that company car drivers are having less of an impact on the environment than normal motorists, something which the Government should be mindful of when next reconsidering motoring taxation levels,” said Walden.