Long-term car rental gets more pleasing figures this year, but moderates its goals for the future. Indeed, public actors make numerous commitments against vehicles, synonymous for them with health, noise and safety nuisances.
The rental between enthusiasm and apprehension
The Syndicat National des Loueurs de Voiture en Longue Durée delivers its figures for 2017 and its objectives for 2018. The SNLVLD is very confident for the future because after a half-hearted 2016.
Indeed, in long-term rental, there are 510,098 more leased vehicles on the road for the year 2017, an increase of 4.9% compared to the year 2016. Thus, in 2017, 1,772,930 leased vehicles are on the road and are managed by the SNLVLD. The union has been able to anticipate the government’s new initiatives and the desires of its consumers by offering more clean vehicles. And especially with a more homogeneous mix of diesel and petrol vehicles.
On the strength of these results, however, the SNLVLD is concerned about the process. The uncertainties surrounding taxation seem to reduce some customers. The proposed fleet mix is also a challenge. The union wants to continue to offer more diesel and petrol vehicles, but clashes with state policies. And those of metropolises as for polluting vehicles.
Research in the direction of innovation is therefore an important point for the union, which wants to anticipate as much as possible all these major changes. For example, trends show that it is now increasingly important for motorists to have a GPS built into their vehicle, or access to smart vehicles with intelligent driving or braking assistants.
New state regulations that are becoming more and more stringent…
For several years now, the automotive market has been confronted with decrees and other legislation in favour of a more respectful way of life and also on road safety. COP 21 and the One Planet Summit remind drivers of their place in the causes of global pollution. Car rental companies are at the forefront of its commitments.
Car manufacturers are certainly reacting by offering vehicles that are less polluting, smarter and safer, but at prices that are still too high. Leasing is therefore affected because it has a direct impact on its competitive strategy. Already in 2016, the State acted in favor of the approximation of diesel and gasoline prices, which accompanied, unfortunately for drivers, the rise in the price of diesel caused by the rising price of a barrel.
The Minister of Ecological Transition, Nicolas Hulot, has renewed his determination to reduce more and more the place of petrol and diesel vehicles in the French car fleet, to leave more and more room for hybrid or electric cars.
… who closely follow the green initiatives of cities
In addition to new state regulations, rental companies must also anticipate the measures taken by major metropolises. Everywhere in France and around the world, the same trend stands out. Restriction of access to certain areas for vehicles that are too polluting, creation of fully pedestrian zones, increase in taxes on certain vehicles, etc.
The major metropolises are the forerunners of the environmental trends that animate their inhabitants. The quality of life is directly impacted by the modes of travel. First of all, we note pollution from vehicles, which can generate impressive smog during the seasons with little wind, but also noise pollution.
Towards less polluting modes of transport
Individual vehicles are therefore increasingly being replaced by public transport modes such as buses (non-polluting for some), trams or metros, but also by an increase in the number of cycle paths.
Thus, Paris wants to double the number of its bike paths and access roads to non-polluting vehicles by 2020. Another country is Germany, which recently allowed cities to ban or regulate their area’s access to cars.
Closer to home, Bordeaux has set up its regulatory system for polluting vehicles called Critic’Air. In addition, several areas near the city centre will soon be redeveloped to become fully pedestrianised, like part of Gambetta Square.
Vehicle rental companies and syndicates must therefore be proactive about the commitments from any part on the vehicles. The path to fully electric vehicles is becoming increasingly clear, but the zero-vehicle approaches also pose new obstacles.