Fleets are unlikely to stop buying vehicles powered by diesel engines unless tax and legislative changes are introduced, Chevin Fleet Solutions has said.

Recent concerns over the accuracy of the diesel emissions tests and the affects on air quality of NOx are unlikely to create a shift on their own, Ashley Sowerby, the firm’s managing director has predicted.

According to Sowerby, fleets want to be environmentally friendly, but are also under pressure to balance financial and operational pressures.

“Unless there are changes to tax and the law – and quite dramatic changes – fleets will probably keep favouring diesel because it still provides the best balanced outcome when they come to making fuel choices,” Sowerby said.

However, Sowerby said the decision to ban diesel cars from Paris by 2020 could mark a shift away from diesel and create disincentives.

“Similar discussions are underway in the UK and Norway and probably elsewhere. It will take this kind of definite legislative change if fleets are to switch in volume to petrol, hybrids of even electric vehicles,” he added.