The Diesel/Petrol/Electric Debate- Our Viewpoint

One of the challenges that new car buyers face is which type of engine technology to select.  In addressing this, it’s worth considering several factors.  Speaking purely from a company car point of view, electric or petrol/electric hybrid vehicles are attractive to the driver because of the reduced benefit in kind liability, but there are hidden issues for business owners.  Where will the vehicle be charged, and who will pay for the electricity?  Will hybrid vehicles be used correctly by the driver?  We have had many issues where customers have leased hybrid vehicles for their staff and have been horrified at the increased business fuel costs, as the vehicles have not been driven correctly.  They’ve been used as petrol vehicles with the charging element rarely utilised, and the low mpg that has resulted has meant a significant rise in running costs, with the only beneficiary being the driver.

Used correctly, and with a clear company plan of action regarding recharging, they make sense as a company car.  But we have seen a large rise in customers handing back their employees hybrid vehicles and opting back in to low emission petrol or diesel vehicles.

Diesel itself is not dead, and we have this year seen a rise in the number of diesel cars that we have supplied.  We carefully select the type of finance for the customer, to meet their needs – and we have no hesitation in continuing to supply diesel vehicles on the basis that the customer is covered in terms of being able to return the vehicle at the end of the agreement, rather than being liable for a large end payment which may not be achievable if the value of the second hand diesel vehicles continue a downward trend.

Petrol technology is improving, especially in terms of miles per gallon that the engines achieve.  Smaller petrol engines now perform much better than they used to, and it is not uncommon for mid-sized hatchbacks such as the Ford Focus to perform well on a 1.0 petrol engine, in both performance and economy.

As ever, we try to match the car and the type of finance to the situation that you find yourself in – there is always a common sense solution to be had, and we like to put together all the pieces of the jigsaw when it comes to your vehicle requirements.





WLTP Explained

Heard of WLTP? Possibly not, but the new Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Procedure is something which is causing a massive headache for European car manufacturers.

From 1st September all brand new passenger cars must be tested under the new rules prior to the registration process. Every variant of a model – thousands in all – must undergo testing, because different powertrain and option packages can affect carbon dioxide emissions in different ways. There have been huge bottlenecks at the agencies that perform the emissions tests.  One organization in Germany is running 24 hours a day, 6 days a week to try and meet demand.

Any car not certified by 1st September cannot legally be sold in Europe, although exemptions are available to manufacturers, a process known as derogation. The new test procedure has proven so exacting and expensive that many car manufacturers are struggling to have their cars certified in time, leading to some – including  Audi, BMW, Peugeot, Porsche and Volkswagen – taking selected cars off sale.  Seat have removed optional extras to simplify its model range, helping them to meet WLTP demands – they also say their customers prefer this less complicated approach to buying a vehicle.

Volkswagen is being forced to rent multi-story car parks to store up to 250,000 of their newly manufactured cars because they can’t currently be sold under new emissions rules.  VW have also shut down their main Wolfsburg factory for one to two days a week during August and September and it was revealed that the current generation of Golf GTI has been taken off sale because of the WLTP test restrictions.

The good news is that because we are fully independent and not tied to a particular manufacturer, we can help you to navigate this process by steering you in the direction of those manufacturers that have ‘got their act together’ and have established a compliant plan of action to tackle the problem.

Freedom is a Happy Customer

We were so pleased to receive this lovely commendation from our long standing customer Kevin Farthing, of Freedom Installation & Service.  Thanks Kev!

I have been using HV Motor Finance since starting up 10 years ago as a sole trader. It was very difficult to lease a vehicle when setting up my business I had no sets of accounts so many companies were not interested. Richard and the team made it very easy for me to set up my business lease. After 3 lease terms I am now just about to take delivery of 2 new Citroen Relays to join the Astra SRI we took delivery of last year. It’s a pleasure working with these guys. We don’t see them as a supplier but an important part of our team. Many thanks


One of the Citroen Relay vans, all kitted out!


The Twins – Freedom Installation’s new Citroen Relays Vans