A fleet of 20 Mercedes C350e Plug-in Hybrids (PHEVs) have been put under the spotlight in the latest trial undertaken by Lombard Vehicle Solutions' partner ALD Automotive.
The PHEVs have been assigned to ALD Automotive and Lombard Vehicle Solutions company car drivers to recreate the conditions of a typical business fleet. Throughout the trial, the ALD Consultancy team will monitor and assess the real-world performance across a range of driving styles, terrains and mileages. The resulting data will be used to design a blueprint that LVS customers can use as a practical tool to help them successfully roll out PHEVs within their own fleets.
Addressing the trial, Matt Dale, Consultancy Services Manager at ALD, says, "As the debate around air quality continues, the uptake of alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFVs) is on the rise and companies appear to be leading the way. This latest trial, which focuses specifically on PHEVs, will help us understand the sorts of challenges and considerations our customers face when taking the leap into the AFV space."
"While there's a vast array of information available to fleets looking to adopt AFVs, we plan to go one step further. We want to be able to talk to our customers from a position of experience and be entirely confident in the advice we give them so that they can make reasoned and well informed decisions."
Each vehicle has been fitted with the award-winning telematics device, ProFleet, which will gather key journey data, such as mileage and fuel consumption. This will enable the team to assess the vehicles' overall performance in different driving scenarios, including reports on headline data such as MPG. The information will be published and used to help customers when renewing contracts or updating their fleet policy.
The trial will also shine light on the practicalities of running a PHEV. Matt Dale adds, "As a real-life study, we aim to monitor not only the car's performance but also how our staff manage this type of vehicle on a day-to-day basis, right down to the practicalities of journey planning and charging their cars, whether at home or work".
The trial will take place over the next 6 months, with the results due to be published later this year.