Diesel, Petrol and Hybrids. Oh my!

From the dark old days of little choice, we’ve now got options everywhere we look. You can eat vegetarian just about anywhere, work in an office or from halfway across the world, and drive a car that’s powered by anything from sparkly new electricity to grunty old diesel.

When it comes to business vehicles, there’s a lot of choice involved and it all depends on what you use your wheels for. Traditionally, cars ran on petrol and trucks and vans would go on diesel. These days, there’s a bit more to it because you’re no longer held to a particular type of fuel based on the kind of vehicle you have. Let’s break it down by fuel type with some good old pros and cons.

Petrol Pros:

  • It’s well accommodated by our fuel infrastructure.
  • Petrol cars are often cheaper to buy.

And the cons:

  • Petrol vehicles depreciate the fastest.
  • It releases carcinogens like benzene when burnt - not a favourite for the environment.
  • Petrol prices are volatile.
  • Oil is a finite resource.

Diesel Pros:

  • Long term vehicle costs are lower because of their lower depreciation rate.
  • You’ll get longer lasting engines and higher mileage tolerance.
  • Diesel vehicles are usually more efficient in fuel usage than petrol - sometimes even more efficient than petrol hybrids!
  • Road user charges are still cheaper per kilometre than the fuel excise on petrol prices.
  • A higher pulling power means that the mid-range acceleration of big diesel cars can be better than speedy sports cars. That’s why it’s great for commercial large-load needs.

Now for some cons:

  • Diesel produces nitrous oxides, hydrocarbons and particulates, big words that are bad for our friend the environment. So, although it makes less CO2, it’s still no greenie.
  • Another fuel with volatile prices.
  • And guess what? It’s also a finite resource.

And now welcome the hybrid discussion.

Hybrid pros:

  • It’s much cleaner and more fuel efficient for urban driving.
  • These vehicles have a higher resale value.
  • You’ll have lower tax bills.
  • Having a conventional engine in there still means you’ve got no range limits. So you can drive a little cleaner, but still get wherever you need without puttering out of charge.

Cons...wait, there are cons?

  • They’re generally a bit pricier than petrol vehicles.
  • Maintenance can require specialist skills that might cost you more than the average mechanic bill.
  • If your battery needs replacing, it’s fairly expensive.
  • Hybrids do still emit bad stuff whereas electric cars don’t.
  • Plug-in hybrids still use dedicated charging infrastructure and take hours to charge.
  • Because the idea is less impact, the engines are smaller. You guessed it, that means less pulling power for big loads.

So after all of that, what is best for your business? If you need vehicles for transporting larger loads over longer distances, you’ll probably want to look at a diesel. At the end of the day, business is business, and it may be your best bet to save a few dollars when it comes to cost and fuel efficiency.

If what you need is a small run-around car to get you from meeting to meeting and around about the town, a hybrid could be a really great option for your business. It’s a way to get what you need from an everyday vehicle, with less environmental impact . Not to mention how exciting it would be to drive around in a car of the future! Just remember that there are many factors to consider when deciding which fuel is best for you and your business.