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First fleets recognised under new ‘Go Ultra Low Company’ status

A group of 11 UK organisations – including Microsoft UK, University of Birmingham and London Fire Brigade – have become the first to be awarded the new ‘Go Ultra Low Company’ status.

The initiative has been launched today (11 May) by the Go Ultra Low campaign group and is open to public and private sector organisations that already use EVs, or offer them to employees as company cars, providing there’s a commitment for EVs to make up at least 5% of their vehicle fleet by 2020. This figure is in line with Government forecasts that EVs will represent 5% of total UK new car registrations by the end of the decade.

The first 11 organisations to receive Go Ultra Low Company status are: AMT Vehicle Rental; Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust; Environment Agency; Fleetdrive Electric; eConnect Cars; Gnewt Cargo; Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service; London Fire Brigade; Manchester Metropolitan University; Microsoft UK and University of Birmingham.

The new scheme has been endorsed by government and the car industry, and is intended to set the new ‘green standard’ for business motoring.

Transport Minister Andrew Jones said: “It’s great to see a growing number of British fleets going green and I would encourage other businesses to learn from these Go Ultra Low companies and benefit from the huge fuel and tax savings offered by electric vehicles. “The UK is a world leader in the uptake of low emission vehicles and our long-term economic plan is investing £600 million by 2020 to improve air quality, create jobs and achieve our goal of every new car and van in the UK being ultra-low emission by 2040.”

The London Fire Brigade runs a car fleet of 57 vehicles, 100% of which will become electric in 2016. The University of Birmingham operates 15 plug-in cars and vans – representing 16% of its total fleet. Currently, 6% of Microsoft UK’s fleet are EVs, with plans to increase this share to 15% by October 2016 and 20% by April 2017.

Poppy Welch, head of Go Ultra Low, said: “It’s fantastic to see organisations from across the public and private sector leading the way in the uptake of electric vehicles. We want to encourage every business in the UK adopt these vehicles into their fleets and offer their employees the chance to drive or own an electric vehicle.

“Not only are electric vehicles cleaner, but they can save businesses and employees money. Businesses large and small are going electric and choosing from the wide range vehicles available today – from 4x4s and vans to hatchbacks and saloon cars,” she added.

UK organisations can apply to become a Go Ultra Low Company via the Go Ultra Low website at www.goultralow.com/fleet

Natalie Middleton

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