BVRLA calls for long-term ULEZ vision
The BVRLA has called on policymakers to properly engage with the fleet industry to tackle air quality problems ahead of the introduction of the London Ultra Low Emission Zone next month.
“The ULEZ coming in April is just the start,” said BVRLA Chief Executive Gerry Keaney. “We will see a massive expansion to the zone in October 2021 and many are predicting it will become zero emission from 2025.
“Fleets are already choosing the vehicles they will operate for the next few years,” he continued. “For many, 2025 is now. We urgently need a clear, long-term vision that includes the right support for SMEs and other essential road users.”
The association wants the mayor of London, Transport for London and national Government to provide more money for ULEZ mitigation measures, ensure that future zero emission zones are properly signposted, managed and co-ordinated, to focus on bottlenecks in the charging infrastructure, ensuring priority for commercial vehicle fleets and car share providers and embrace mobility credits, which encourage people to swap vehicle ownership for public transport, bike and car sharing vouchers.
Van drivers still flouting phone-drive laws
More than half of van drivers have admitted driving while using a mobile phone without using a hands-free device despite the threat of a £200 fine and six points on their licence.
According to Volkswagen Vans’ research of 500 drivers, only 27% said they use the hands-free kit equipped to their vehicle, compared with 33% that said their van has it but they don’t always use it, while 23% don’t have hands-free equipment in their vehicle.
“Our figures show that many van drivers don’t have or aren’t using a Bluetooth® hands-free kit behind the wheel – risking not only a fine and potential ban, which would damage business, but, more seriously, a potentially fatal accident,” said Sarah Cox, Head of Marketing at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.
Infiniti axes European operation
Nissan’s Premium brand Infiniti has confirmed that it is to withdraw from the Western Europe market early next year after a failed attempt to establish the brand, which registered just 750 cars in 2018 for a 0.03% market share, down 78.7% on the 2017 figure of 3515, and has managed 48 in the first two months of 2019.
Infiniti will instead focus on its largest growth markets of China and North America, while also electrifying its line-up from 2021.