The total business fleet leasing market for cars and vans in the UK grew 6.5% year on year to 1.345m, according to the BVRLA's latest quarterly leasing survey.
The business car fleet grew 3.6% to 987,000 between Q1 2016 and Q1 2017 while the light commercial vehicle (LCV) fleet grew 15.3% to 358,000.
Total car leasing grew 11% year-on-year with over half of that growth coming from an increase in personal contract hire (PCH). Business fleet leasing contributed just under a quarter of that growth.
Average CO2 emissions from leased vehicles fell 4% year on year from 117.7g/km to 113.1g/km. Average emissions for new BVRLA member registrations was 110.8g/km compared with the national new registrations average of 120.5g/km. This had remained static during 2016.
Additional analysis carried out this quarter compared CO2 emissions of cars on business contract hire and those on personal contract hire. The average personal contract car on the BVRLA member fleet had emissions of 118g/km CO2, compared to the 112g/km of those on a business contract.
The proportion of diesel cars in the BVRLA fleet continued to decline. Less than three-quarters of the BVRLA total fleet is now diesel (74.9%) and just over two-thirds of new registrations (67%).
BVRLA chief executive Gerry Keaney said: "CO2 emissions are clearly heading in the right direction, but we are concerned with the lack of progress in the reduction of average CO2 emissions in new cars during 2016.
"Government has ambitious targets for improving air quality and cutting CO2 emissions. With the right tax regimes, incentives and guidance, the fleet industry can have a huge impact on achieving these goals."