Fleet electrification has been a focus at Geotab Extend, a virtual learning and networking event for fleet professionals and industry partners, with executives discussing resale value, battery health, total cost of ownership, and cost of tracking.
Geotab announced that electric vehicle data, previously available through its ProPlus plan, is now available via its Pro plan, lowering costs for fleet users wanting to effectively track their electric vehicles (EVs). Colin Sutherland, executive vice president, sales and marketing, said users can take their GO9 device from the retired gasoline-powered vehicle and plug it directly into their new electric vehicle, and it will provide EV data at the same price point as before.
The GO9 gathers data on battery state of charge and performance indicators such as efficiency, which gives fleet managers more information when they are ready to remarket their EVs.
“When you take that vehicle to market and auction you’ll know how much battery capacity is left in it and that will get you a premium price at auction for your electric vehicle,” Sutherland said.
Charlotte Argue, senior manager of fleet electrification, said while the first generation of EVs with lower range hasn’t held their resale value as well, she expects this will improve.
“We are into the next generation of EVs, with 150-plus-mile range. I don’t anticipate resale will drop as quickly,” she told Government Fleet in a media event before the conference.
She added this longer range allows fleet operators to keep their vehicles longer.
“Even at 80% battery capacity, it’s still more than enough range for many duty cycles, so fleets can hold those vehicles longer,” Argue said.
Argue authored a white paper, Battery State of Health, that found EV batteries holding up much better than the previously thought seven years.
In the white paper, Geotab found that across different makes and models, batteries degraded on average 2.3% every year. Batteries degraded faster in vehicles in very hot climates and vehicles that relied on fast charging. Argue recommended fleets that have the option should charge overnight to reduce battery degradation.
Cold weather, however, does not degrade batteries. Rather, it lowers the daily range of the battery because it takes energy to warm the cabin — sucking up to 50% of the battery range at -4F, as an example, she said.
In the push for fleet electrification, Geotab is making it easier for fleets to make the switch, including launching its Electric Vehicle Suitability Assessment tool a year ago. According to Argue, electrifying your fleet will probably result in reduced costs in the long run.
In a study that looked at light-duty vehicles using Geotab across multiple industries, the company found “almost two-thirds of the vehicles we looked at had a TCO [total cost of ownership] opportunity,” Argue said. “Fleets were losing money by not switching to EVs.”
Originally posted on Government Fleet
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