Choosing the right company car

For the company, granting a company car is an excellent way to reward its employees without increasing its payroll costs by increasing remuneration. For the employee, it is the opportunity to have a new vehicle, probably more upscale than the one he could have bought, and this without having to assume or the cost (purchase and cost of use) or constraints (maintenance). But before setting your sights on the model of your dreams, within the budget that is generally allocated to you according to your function in the company and your needs, here are the precautions to take so as not to go wrong.

It is first of all necessary to define precisely the needs, in the professional framework but also for a private use if it is authorized. The number of kilometers traveled, the types of journeys made (urban, peri-urban, motorways), any loading needs or the number of children affect the choice of bodywork and engine.

How to choose the right company vehicles? The selection of “Obs”

Regarding the bodywork, despite the success of SUVs, we should not neglect the other segments which, very often, offer a better interior space / exterior space ratio. This is the case with minivans but also, quite often, station wagons. Not to mention that, in an equivalent category, an SUV will almost always be more expensive to buy as well as to use. Heavier, it is also more penalized by taxation, because of its higher consumption. Criteria to be integrated, without obscuring despite everything the pleasure dimension of the SUV.

The precise definition of the needs will also make it possible to choose the engine. And in this area, it is essential to resist any fad that can lead to inappropriate decision-making. Of course, switching to ecological energies, primarily electric, must be one of the options.

Let’s dream a little in front of these cars of the future

But for heavy riders (over 40,000 km per year), diesel, for example, is always preferred. Its measured consumption will be an argument to be made to your hierarchy. And remember that modern diesels are cleaned up much more efficiently than a few years ago. As for new energies, there is no need to opt for a 100% electric vehicle if daily trips are made outside urban areas or in places without charging stations. As for the hybrid (classic or rechargeable), it is above all in urban and peri-urban areas that it finds its interest.

Integrate the user cost

It will then be necessary to optimize the cost of the vehicle, to fit into your employer’s budget, and this is where things get complicated. Indeed, we must look for the TCO (total cost of ownership, “Total cost of ownership”) the lowest given that this indicator depends on many factors (purchase cost, user cost, depreciation, etc.). A study published at the end of 2019 by Lease Plan thus shows that the TCO of an electric vehicle, while it tends to approach those of diesels and gasoline, remains higher. It reaches 806 € per month against 643 € for a gasoline vehicle and 520 € for a diesel. Values ​​calculated over a holding period of three years and an annual mileage of 20,000 km. Changing one of these two criteria can reshuffle the cards. By increasing the mileage, for example, diesel will widen its advantage.

Choosing a vehicle begins with choosing a body type. (NISSAN)

Taxation is an important part of the TCO. In this regard, the most interesting option remains electric since it entails a bonus of € 3,000, exemption from company vehicle tax (TVS) and regional registration tax (card gray), depreciation up to € 30,000 or even free parking depending on the municipality. But electricity is subject to a number of constraints such as a still limited range and a charging procedure that is too often complicated.

Thus, the transition to a zero-emission car can only be done by having, in advance, defined an adapted use, that is to say mainly in the city and including sufficiently long parking times and strategically charging stations. positioned. On a classic “private” installation of the 7.4 kWh Wallbox type (excluding more powerful public terminals), it takes around 2 hours to recover 100 km of autonomy. In order to reap the full benefits of this engine, you must also adapt your driving style, which may require specific training.

Reduce the impact of taxation

Since March 1, the tax burden on conventional engines has increased. The new method of calculating consumption put in place (called WLTP) is closer to actual use. This results in an increase in consumption and therefore in emissions… on which the taxation is based. The penalty and TVS scales have been adapted (downward), but the increase in emission values ​​is more important than the relaxation of the scales. The result is an overall increase in taxation. Another novelty, the WLTP protocol now takes into account the weight of vehicles. The choice of bodywork (SUV rather than MPV, for example) and options may thus have a decisive effect on the level of penalty. Be careful, before checking an automatic transmission, four-wheel drive or large rims, to the consequences on emissions. To have the pleasure of driving in a “full option” model, it may be necessary to switch to a less powerful engine.

A final criterion enters into the choice of the vehicle, and it should not be neglected, it is the image conveyed by a model. This is an important dimension for the employee as well as for the company. Opting for an electric, for a top of the range or a vehicle made in France is also a way to display its values. The ideal is that they are shared between the company and the employee.

File produced by Agence Forum News
Editor-in-chief: Caroline Brun
Editor: Benoît Lande

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