Vauxhall Ampera – less taxing for business

The Vauxhall Ampera could be one of the best fleet cars for business buyers because of the impressively low tax on offer for those who choose the extended-range electric vehicle.

Business buyers tend to target the, largely German, premium car makers when it comes to finding new cars for a business fleet.

The recent resurgence of Jaguar has given buyers another option on the market while the likes of the Vauxhall Insignia and Ford Mondeo are more affordable options with higher trim levels matching many more executive cars on the market.

But a five-door Vauxhall hatchback could be the most exciting new business car on sale today because of futuristic technology that could drastically cut costs for buyers.

The Vauxhall Ampera is priced at £30,000 – a reduced price because it qualifies for a £5,000 deduction as part of the government’s plug-in car grant.

This was introduced to encourage take-up of electric cars but the Ampera is the only car eligible that offers a range similar to that of a petrol or diesel-powered vehicle.

The Vauxhall Ampera is an extended-range electric vehicle which means that it uses a conventional electric system – a battery which powers electric motors, which in turn drives the wheels – but adds an on-board petrol engine that can recharge the battery on the move.

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This allows the car to travel 50 miles on a single charge and an extra 300 miles when the petrol engine kicks in. In petrol-electric mode the Ampera delivers CO2 emissions of 27g/km and fuel economy upwards of 230mpg on the combined cycle.

For private buyers this means free UK road tax – or Band A – because the cut-off point is 100g/km of CO2 emissions. London drivers will also benefit from exemption from the London congestion charge.

The main concern for business drivers is the vehicle’s Benefit-in-Kind (BIK) rating. The Vauxhall Ampera’s emissions fall between 1g/km and 75g/km and as a result the car falls into the five per cent band of BIK.

It also means an employer’s Class 1A National Insurance payments will be low because they too are based on a car’s CO2 emissions.

The European Car of the Year 2012, the five-door Vauxhall Ampera hatchback is also a winner when it comes to residual values.

Early indications suggest the Ampera’s residual value will be well above that of an electric car because of the petrol aspect and the high level of specification.

Even entry-level Vauxhall Ampera comes with DAB radio, a seven-inch touch screen display and Bluetooth as standard as well as a cloth interior and a choice of four body colours.

Priced from £30,000, the Vauxhall Ampera is on sale now at Perrys Vauxhall dealerships – and business buyers are sure to reduce their running costs with the latest green addition to the Vauxhall line up.