Mark Adair

Why employees across London are switching to electric cars

Employees at companies across the London region are increasingly switching to electric cars due to a combination of environmental, tax relief and regulatory reasons, it emerged today.

Unprecedented demand is being seen by Azets, the UK’s largest regional accountancy firm and business advisor to SMEs, following a new strategic partnership with Total Motion, a major UK fleet management and leasing provider which offers salary sacrifice car schemes via trading company Pink Salary Exchange.

David Hedges, Employment Tax Partner, Azets, provides advice to employers looking to move away from diesel and petrol towards a green fleet, including plug-ins.

He said, “the UK’s net-zero carbon strategy is rightly focusing minds in a way we’ve never witnessed before and this is showing through increased demand for electric battery company cars.

“We are inundated with requests from companies keen to reward staff with a government-approved tax ‘benefit in kind’ through zero carbon or low carbon emission vehicles.

“It is perhaps only a matter of time before diesel and petrol cars are prohibited from travelling in ‘smog cities’ and it is worth bearing in mind that the government has announced new proposals which would see more than 50 per cent of all new cars sold to be fully electric by 2028, just six years away.”

He added, “where an employee receives a company car by reason of employment, this gives rise to a taxable ‘benefit in kind’, known as BIK. Income tax, payable by the employee, and Class 1A NICs, payable by the employer, are due on the ‘cash equivalent’ of the benefit.

“But conventionally fuelled vehicles are more expensive for both employee and employer electric vehicles and, to a lesser extent, hybrid vehicles provide significant advantages in this regard.”

Total Motion director Simon Hill, based at the company’s headquarters in Leicester, said, “our partnership with Azets is helping decarbonise road traffic as more companies look to the environmental, tax, staff retention and reputational benefits of pure-play electric vehicles for directors and employees.

“From 2030, which is not that far off the horizon, the sale of new petrol and diesel cars will be banned. That cut-off date is focusing many minds.”

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