Fleet Assist's md, Vincent St Claire
According to Fleet Assist's 2022 data the average transaction value of a BEV service is currently approximately 22% less than an equivalent ICE car. Much of this can be put down to reduced labour times which are currently 33% shorter for BEVs than ICE cars.
The parts component of a BEV job is also typically 28% cheaper than an ICE car due to them having fewer working parts, with brake wear far lower. When considering parts prices which have risen by around 10% in the past 12 months the BEV/ICE SMR cost gap widens further.
Fleet Assist's SMR data shows that currently the most common BEV parts being replaced are pollen filters, bulbs, key fob batteries, wipers, and brake fluid.
But despite this evidence, it does not guarantee that BEV servicing prices will reduce dramatically as dealers look to raise SMR costs to retain their profitability. Dealers are starting to feel the pinch of reduced servicing revenues as drivers cover fewer miles which coincides with a rapid rise in operating costs, particularly technician salaries.
"Fleet and retail drivers cannot take it for granted that BEV SMR prices will remain cheaper than ICE cars, as over time costs could become more comparable," explained Vincent St Claire, Fleet Assist's md.
"Garages are already starting to come to terms with how EVs will impact their servicing revenues and workshop traffic in the longer term. We may see more garages looking at ways to address how the paradigm shift of BEV aftersales is going to challenge their service provision and fees they charge," he added.
Fleet Assist was contacted recently by a franchised garage that was considering implementing a specific BEV servicing labour rate of £125, an 89% increase over the equivalent labour cost of servicing ICE cars.
Fleet Assist would not support such a knee jerk pricing action, but the reality is that garages, are having to take their future investment and growing overheads into account. This includes technician training, a continued provision of a collection and delivery service and courtesy vehicles and upgrading their workshops to manage BEVs, which includes multiple software updates, all of which cost time and money.
This follows a recent survey by The Motor Ombudsman that confirmed that six in 10 garages expected to raise their prices in 2022 to remain profitable against the background of rising overheads.
"We are looking to navigate our way through these complex times ensuring our customers continue to benefit from Fleet Assist's annual SMR spending power of in excess of £150 million whilst ensuring garages invest and support our customer's proposition," said St Claire.