Hybrid Fleet Vehicle Sales to Surpass 740,000 Units per Year in 2015

Commercial and government fleet managers are looking to a variety of technologies to protect their budgets from increasing fuel costs and, at the same time, meet emissions-reduction targets.

Fleet operators are increasingly finding that hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) can help accomplish both goals – improving fuel economy between 5% and 40% and lowering emissions 10% to 50% below comparable vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICEs).

According to a new report from Pike Research, the global market for HEV light-duty vehicles in the fleet sector will increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17.5% during the years from 2010 to 2015, with vehicle sales surpassing 740,000 per year by the end of that period.

“There is a compelling case for hybrid fleet vehicles from the perspective of fuel efficiency and environmental impact, but a number of economic challenges still remain for the industry,” says senior analyst Dave Hurst.

“Lifetime costs for HEVs, including the cost of the vehicle plus fuel, can often be higher than ICE vehicles. However, a number of government incentives are helping to close the gap for fleet operators. In addition, many fleet managers are electing to purchase HEVs as a means of complying with requirements to reduce fleet emissions, as well as to hedge against higher fuel costs in the future.”

Hurst adds that passenger cars will be the largest segment for HEVs in fleet markets, but some of the highest growth rates over the next five years will be in the SUV and pickup truck segments, particularly in the United States.

For plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), Pike Research anticipates that passenger cars will be even more prominent, representing more than 80% of the fleet market in 2015, due to automakers’ focus on consumer markets for PHEV model launches.

Pike Research’s study, “Hybrid Electric Vehicles for Fleet Markets”, analyzes the opportunities and challenges for light-duty HEVs, PHEVs, and BEVs in commercial fleet markets around the world. The study examines global growth drivers and business case considerations for fleet managers, and includes detailed market forecasts, segmented by world regions and key countries, as well as profiles for key industry players.