The case for moving to electric trucks has become even more compelling after fuel prices soared to such levels that it is now cheaper to charge up an HGV than fuel a diesel model, according to freight booker Zeus Labs. 

It said small and medium haulage fleets are being pushed to the brink and an “anaemic government response” to the crisis is crippling owner-operator fleets. However, the cost of fuel means the industry could now pioneer a national switch to zero emission goods vehicles, added Clemente Theotokis, Zeus Labs chief executive.

The hopeful pronouncement came after research found 53% of fleet operators thought high energy prices and a further increase in the electricity price cap this October would dampen appetite for EVs. But Theotakis said the fuel crisis could be “the perfect impetus” to drive investment in the future of transport.

He said e-HGVs can do 150 miles on one charge, so the government could help by implementing the EV recharging infrastructure fund as quickly as possible and plot out charge points across the country. “Going electric is not only more sustainable in the environmental sense of the word, it is also more sustainable in the long term, as a more robust electric grid and charging infrastructure will enable the UK to rely less on imported gas, oil and diesel,” he said. ”We have the opportunity here for the UK to capitalise on the fuel crisis by building resilience into our supply chain, but more leadership from the government is needed.”

Webfleet Solutions has said that the recent decision by the government to remove the plug-in grant for electric car buyers in order to pivot funding towards electric vans and trucks should lead to wider conversations about the savings available to fleet operators over the whole life of their assets.