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Typical Van Issues: Diesel Vs Electric

Typical Van Issues Diesel Vs Electric - Van Sales UK
August 4th, 2023

As the conversation around electric vehicles rumbles on and the electric offerings from manufacturers continues to improve, the choice between diesel and electric vans has become a critical decision for commercial van fleet managers. Both options offer unique advantages and challenges, making it important to weigh the factors that impact leasing vans for business.

So let’s take a closer look at some of the typical issues faced by fleet managers when choosing between diesel and electric vans, delving into key considerations such as cost, environmental impact, range, and infrastructure. By understanding these factors, fleet managers can make informed decisions about their commercial van fleets..

Cost Considerations

Upfront Costs

Analysing the initial expenses associated with purchasing or leasing vans is vital. While electric vans tend to have higher upfront costs, they often qualify for government incentives or grants, which can significantly offset the initial investment.

Operational Costs

Diesel vans have traditionally been more economical in terms of fuel costs, but the rising price of diesel and the decreasing cost of electricity are narrowing the gap. Fleet managers must calculate the long-term operational expenses, including maintenance, repairs, and energy costs, to determine the most cost-effective option.

Environmental Impact


Diesel vans are notorious for their emissions of pollutants such as nitrogen oxides and particulate matter. Electric vans, on the other hand, produce zero tailpipe emissions, making them an attractive choice for businesses aiming to reduce their carbon footprint and comply with stricter environmental regulations.


Electric vans contribute to a greener future by utilising renewable energy sources. Fleet managers can position their businesses as environmentally responsible, fostering positive brand perception and appealing to eco-conscious customers.

Range and Charging Infrastructure

Range Anxiety

Diesel vans offer a longer driving range, making them suitable for long-distance deliveries or businesses operating in remote areas where charging infrastructure may be limited. Electric vans, while improving, still have shorter ranges and require careful planning to ensure efficient operations within their range limitations.

Charging Infrastructure

Access to a reliable and widespread charging network is crucial for electric van fleets. Fleet managers need to consider the availability and accessibility of charging stations, both at their operational base and along their routes, to avoid unnecessary downtime and delays.

Maintenance and Reliability


Electric vans typically require less maintenance than their diesel counterparts due to fewer moving parts, resulting in potential cost savings and reduced vehicle downtime.


Diesel vans have a long history of reliability, but electric van technologies are rapidly advancing, resulting in increased dependability. Fleet managers should evaluate the reliability of electric vans by considering factors such as battery life, warranty coverage, and the manufacturer’s track record.

The Verdict

Choosing between diesel and electric vans for commercial van fleets involves a comprehensive evaluation of several key factors. While diesel vans have been the industry norm for many years, electric vans are emerging as a compelling alternative due to their environmental benefits, lower operating costs, and improving technologies. By carefully assessing cost considerations, environmental impact, range and charging infrastructure, and maintenance and reliability, fleet managers can make informed decisions that align with their business objectives and contribute to a more sustainable future.

Are you looking to buy a new electric van or van fleet? Vanaways commits to deals with major manufacturers to get our huge discounts so we can offer new vans at great prices. We can also help with van financing solutions such as leasing, low-interest rates and flexible payment plans.  Contact us today.


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