Future Fleet Management Trends

2019-01-01T21:10:05+00:00

The automotive industry is in the midst of undergoing changes that will greatly impact the future of fleet management as we know it. While certain developing technological concepts such as autonomous vehicles aren’t anything fleets need to immediately worry over, changes are happening at a rapid pace. Fleets that lag behind current trends may find themselves scrambling to become relevant in an industry that continues its march forward. Keeping a close eye on incoming innovations, and simply being prepared for industry changes, can help fleets obtain a better sense of what their operations may look like in the future. Automotive [...]

Future Fleet Management Trends2019-01-01T21:10:05+00:00

Inside Merchants Truck Rental Program

2019-01-01T21:09:02+00:00

Merchants Fleet Management launched a new light-duty, all-wheel-drive truck rental program in October. Designed to serve fleets that need to scale up (or down) intermittently or seasonally, the program is now available nationwide. It allows for unlimited mileage, off-road use, and custom upfitting with no minimum lease term. Tax, title, and maintenance are included. Work Truck met with John Cail, a 30-year fleet and rental industry veteran who serves as vice president of mobility for Merchants, to learn more. Work Truck: What was the genesis of the truck rental program? Cail: It’s really very similar to our first mobility offerings, [...]

Inside Merchants Truck Rental Program2019-01-01T21:09:02+00:00

Higher Motor Oil Prices Nudge Preventive Maintenance Costs Up

2019-01-01T20:39:27+00:00

Editors note: This article is part of a seven-part package dealing with operating costs in 2018. Read related articles that offer and in depth look at fleet maintenance, warranty recovery, tire prices,rising fuel prices, fuel spend strategies, as well as an overview of operating costs. Preventive maintenance (PM) expenses were slightly higher in 2018 because of the increased cost of crude oil, but this was offset by improvements in engine design, onboard oil monitoring technology, and improved oil quality, allowing fleets to extend oil drain intervals. Oil drain intervals will continue to lengthen as older vehicles are retired from fleet service. While there are regional differences [...]

Higher Motor Oil Prices Nudge Preventive Maintenance Costs Up2019-01-01T20:39:27+00:00

Fuel Prices Increase Fleet Operating Costs

2018-12-07T18:25:04+00:00

Editors note: This article is part of a seven-part package dealing with operating costs in 2018. Read related articles that offer and in depth look at tire prices, fleet maintenance, warranty recovery, preventive maintenance, fuel spend, and an overview of operating costs. Gasoline and diesel fuel prices have been gradually, but steadily increasing over the past 12 months and have been the No. 1 factor contributing to the increase in total fleet operating costs in calendar-year 2018. “The fuel price increase is being driven by record high consumer demand, market uncertainty, sanctions, and a year-over-year decline in oil inventories,” said Kelley Hatlee, CAFS, national service department [...]

Fuel Prices Increase Fleet Operating Costs2018-12-07T18:25:04+00:00

Strategies to Reduce Fuel Spend

2018-12-07T18:23:13+00:00

Editors note: This article is part of a seven-part package dealing with operating costs in 2018. Read related articles that offer and in depth look at fleet maintenance, warranty recovery, rising fuel prices, preventive maintenance, tire prices, as well as an overview of operating costs. Since fuel is a fleet’s largest operating expense, it catches the attention of senior management when fuel prices start to rise. In particular, higher fuel prices often trigger reassessments as to fleet acquisition strategies, vehicle rightsizing, how long vehicles should be kept in service, and types of vehicles to operate. “Appropriate vehicle selection and rightsizing are effective fleet strategies for countering the [...]

Strategies to Reduce Fuel Spend2018-12-07T18:23:13+00:00

Vehicle Depreciation Should Rise in 2019

2018-12-07T18:20:52+00:00

The 2018 calendar-year saw low depreciation rates across the board for most vehicle segments. Depreciation trends for most vehicle segments were in line, and in some cases better, than what was seen in 2017. Given that 2017 was regarded as a strong year for used vehicle values, this made 2018 a banner year in terms of depreciation, according to subject-matter experts that spoke to Automotive Fleet for this story. Strong used-vehicle values, according to one of those experts, came as somewhat of a surprise. “This [was] one of the surprises of the year,” said Eric Ibara, director of residual values at Kelley Blue [...]

Vehicle Depreciation Should Rise in 20192018-12-07T18:20:52+00:00

How an RFI Can Improve Your RFP

2018-12-07T18:17:36+00:00

While requests for proposals (RFPs) remain a nearly mandatory process for government agencies in the purchasing process, they have been less prevalent in corporate procurement, especially outside of the Fortune 500. An RFP gives an organization the ability to properly and thoroughly source its fleet vehicles, and other assets, because it collects detailed information that empowers the fleet manager or procurement executive to achieve a better result. While RFPs are more known, a request for information (RFI) is a less-widely used tactical tool that can provide vital pre-RFP information, including a market analysis that can better inform an RFP when it does [...]

How an RFI Can Improve Your RFP2018-12-07T18:17:36+00:00

Michigan Legalizes Recreational Marijuana

2018-11-30T20:24:22+00:00

Michigan became the first Midwest state and the tenth in the nation to legalize marijuana for recreational use during Nov. 6 voting. The Great Lakes State's move comes at a time when researchers from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety recently concluded that legalizing marijuana for recreational use is having a negative impact on the road safety. Michigan previously legalized marijuana for medical use, but now joins California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Colorado, Nevada, Massachusetts, Vermont, Maine, and Washington, D.C., in decriminalizing the substance for recreational purposes. Michigan's move comes on the heels of new data that shows a marked increase in auto [...]

Michigan Legalizes Recreational Marijuana2018-11-30T20:24:22+00:00

Warranty Recovery: More Stringent Manufacturer Enforcement Limits Dollars

2018-12-07T17:28:41+00:00

Editors note: This article is part of a four-part package dealing with operating costs in 2018. Read related articles that offer and in depth look at tire prices, fleet maintenance, as well as an overview of operating costs. All new vehicles are covered under a factory limited warranty program. Warranty recovery can help a fleet manage its maintenance costs, especially with extended powertrain warranties, which cover most components during the service life of a vehicle. “Today, there are more warranty coverages extending comprehensive and powertrain coverages, as well as offering free maintenance for some period. These have all worked to impact warranty coverages and [...]

Warranty Recovery: More Stringent Manufacturer Enforcement Limits Dollars2018-12-07T17:28:41+00:00

Tire Prices Increase Due to Higher Commodity Costs

2018-12-07T17:24:56+00:00

Editors note: This article is part of a four-part package dealing with operating costs in 2018. Read related articles that offer and in depth look at fleet maintenance, warranty recovery, as well as an overview of operating costs. Replacement tire prices are experiencing upward pricing pressures due to higher prices for the commodities used to manufacture tires. In the past, price increases in replacement tires impacted retail consumers more so than fleets, which tend to buy from national account vendors based on pre-negotiated prices. “However, national account programs are no longer as willing to absorb the majority of price increases, as recent increases have [...]

Tire Prices Increase Due to Higher Commodity Costs2018-12-07T17:24:56+00:00