According to the idea of comprehensive one-stop-shop service, Arval will guide the customer through the entire process of choosing a vehicle suitable for the needs of the company.
At the same time, together with our partner EVBox, the supplier of infrastructure for charging electric cars, we support our clients in the selection, installation and financing of chargers for electric company cars.
As in the case of renting any other car, Arval provides comprehensive service in the field of vehicle maintenance and insurance, and an attractive car rental installment is possible, among others thanks to the high residual values of electric vehicles.
The intelligent chargers supplied with the car manage the charging power of the vehicle, adapting it to the maximum power of the energy connection and take into account the power consumption of other devices. This is very important when installing the charger at home with the vehicle user, which allows you to reduce costs. This is a unique solution on the Polish market. Additionally, you can use the control and billing system, which allows you to calculate the energy consumed, e.g. for the purposes of settlement with the employer. The energy meter is in the charger itself.
Thanks to this comprehensive solution, Arval customers do not have to worry about additional activities related to the purchase of an electric car and can quickly discover the benefits and pleasure of driving a low-emission car.
So what are the arguments for thinking seriously about electric cars in the fleet today?
1. Green option
An electric car while driving does not generate exhaust gases, i.e. does not pollute the environment. Although, the mere production of an electric car leaves a greater carbon footprint than the production of a car with a classic engine, and power plants also cause emissions - especially in Poland, where the share of renewable energy sources in production is growing, but still nearly 74% of electricity production comes from burning brown coal and stone - after all, throughout the entire life cycle of the vehicle, a statistical electric vehicle produces 17 to 30% less CO2 than a vehicle with an internal combustion engine.
2. A wide range of new models
The number of models with all-electric drive (the so-called BEV, Battery Electric Vehicle) will increase to over 100 in the next two years, which is a fivefold increase compared to 2018. All major car manufacturers - passenger and delivery vehicles or already they have or will soon have electric cars on offer.
Vehicles of this type will be available in all segments, including small city cars (e.g. Fiat 500e, Peugeot 208, Opel Corsa, Škoda Citigo), compact cars (e.g. Peugeot 308, Volkswagen ID3, Citroën C4, Hyundai Kona), cars large (BMW iX3, Tesla Y, Audi Q4) and luxury cars (e.g. BMW i4, Audi e-tron, BMW iNext, Mercedes EQC).
Drivers of electric vehicles should remember to disconnect cars from the charging station to reduce the risk of damage to the battery during prolonged non-use of vehicles, which we can now be dealing with during the current pandemic coronavirus.
David Watts, an Arval consultant in the UK, points out that leaving the EV vehicle permanently connected for charging can cause problems, especially when the vehicle has rarely been used recently.
He explained at the same time that, according to the general advice of manufacturers - if a 100% battery range is not required for the duration of the journey, you should routinely charge the vehicle to no more than 80% capacity, as this allows you to extend the "life" of the battery and maintain its greater performance over time.
Therefore, it is recommended that if the electric vehicle has not been used for a long time - which can happen during a pandemic period - it should not be connected to the mains and be charged continuously to keep the battery 100% charged. This may damage the battery.
Experienced users of electrified vehicles (fully electric and plug-in hybrids) already know this fact, but in Poland, although the number of users of this type of vehicle is still relatively small, we have seen a significant increase in recent months, mainly due to the growing popularity on the Vistula, but also plans for the government to introduce subsidies for their purchase. That is why many people may not be aware of the risk and it is worth reminding about it - adds Radosław Kitala, Arval Polska consultant.
David also added that it is important to control the current state of charge of the vehicle's battery, but normally charging is only required when the level of charge falls below 50% and you should not let it fall below 20%.
During long periods of relative inactivity, such as we may experience, e.g. during current movement restrictions, all electric vehicles experience a certain degree of loss of battery charge or self-discharge over time due to the power consumption of the electronics in the vehicle, usually in the area of about 2% per month , however, the level depends on the vehicle and the mode in which it was left - for example, in standby or off mode.
Thus, it is recommended that every electric vehicle be maintained at 50-80% charged. This means that there will be no unnecessary battery degradation by charging to a level close to 100%, but also, at the other end of the scale, 50% is high enough to prevent damage due to over-discharge. It is worth remembering that fully discharging the battery may also cause damage.
Some cars have, as David explained, the ability to set a charging limit - often as part of an application provided by the manufacturer - so that they can be left connected to the station and automatically stop charging. However, many models require unplugging and manual monitoring, usually once a week.
As always, in these cases it is best to read the instructions that came with the car or check the manufacturer's website. In Poland - the number of EVs is growing faster and faster, but there are still many myths and uncertainties surrounding electromobility in the broad sense. Working with many of our clients, we are often asked for advice on electric vehicles and infrastructure. The electromobility revolution has begun and we will not avoid it, and there are many rational reasons for including these vehicles in fleets or private use.
Shaun SADLIER Arval UK Head of Consultancy & Arval Mobility Observatory
Mobile: +44 7966 129401 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org