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Road infrastructure, Clean Air Zones and the adoption of alternative fuels top the list of challenges reported by fleet and mobility managers over the next five years.

The finding comes from research in the Arval Mobility Observatory, which questions transport businesses to uncover broader trends.

Asked what the main challenges facing fleets are in the next five years, 43% of respondents cited a lack of road infrastructure, which could cause increased congestion, as the top issue.

The introduction of more Clean Air Zones in urban areas (30%) and the implementation of suitable alternative fuel technologies (30%) followed, while unclear government policy towards transport (27%), increased vehicle taxation (23%) and increased driver personal taxation (16%) were also reported as key challenges.

Shaun Sadlier, Head of Arval Mobility Observatory in the UK, said: “It’s clear that businesses are thinking very hard about the practicalities surrounding the day-to-day use of cars and vans, as shown in their concerns over road infrastructure and Clean Air Zones.

“The latter especially is a subject that is potentially quite confusing, with a whole range of different measures being adopted across the country and some now being delayed by the coronavirus crisis. Our view is that this complexity is probably at the root of the concerns being reported, because the rules that need to be observed in the majority of cities are quite moderate.”

He said the implementation of alternative fuel technology which, for the vast majority of fleets during the next five years, would mean electric and plug-in cars and vans.

“This is a major shift but our experience is that, for most businesses, the transition turns out to be relatively painless in the real world. Certainly, conditions for adoption get easier all the time.

“For example, a positive development is that an increasing range of models are being introduced, meaning that more drivers have the choice of an appropriate vehicle to meet their needs. Other key points to consider are that choice lists are carefully constructed using a whole life cost methodology and that there is an understanding of the recharging infrastructure and how to use it effectively.”