Managing the Financial Side of Commercial Fleets

Trends in Executive Fleet Vehicle Management

Fleets utilize executive vehicle programs as compensation or perks. Several luxury automakers discuss their programs and current trends.

October 2012, by Lauren Fletcher - Also by this author

Many luxury automakers offer executive fleet programs. From Audi, to BMW, to Mercedes-Benz, to Volvo, there are numerous programs available to help fleet managers manage executive fleet vehicle programs.

These programs include vehicle incentives, courtesy delivery payments to dealer partners, fleet pricing, and enhanced service.

Fleets looking to utilize executive vehicles as reward and recruitment tools should look no further than these executive fleet vehicle programs.

The automakers also took time to discuss some current trends in executive fleet vehicle management.

Audi's A6.
Audi's A6.

Audi of America

Reward company leadership with a car offering class-leading luxury, design, quality, and safety. Audi has evolved into a pioneer of technology and designs and is repeatedly setting new standards in the automotive industry. Producing cars that are innovative, sporty, progressive, and sophisticated, it’s clear why the Audi brand is quickly becoming the choice for companies that do not wish to be generic, according to the automaker.

“Audi is now in its 20th consecutive month of record sales in the U.S.,” said Michael Stafford, commercial accounts manager at Audi. “Our growth and popularity now translate directly to higher resale results at auctions. This, in turn, benefits our residual values. Our combination of class-leading residual values and 24/7 roadside assistance are appealing to fleet managers who are not only looking at Audi’s total cost of ownership for their executives, but for their entire organization.”

In regards to trends, Stafford commented, “There has been a gradual shift from drivers receiving a specific dollar amount from their employer to employers electing one or two OEMs to qualify for volume fleet incentive programs. This helps leverage the company’s purchasing power with the selected OEM.”

Audi of America offers a variety of fleet incentive programs to bona fide commercial accounts possessing a valid Audi fleet account number. Audi also offers customized volume incentive programs developed in consultation with corporate fleet managers specific to the needs of their company. Additionally, Audi compensates its dealer partners with a courtesy delivery payment. This ensures a highly satisfactory new-vehicle delivery experience.

Equally as important, there is no courtesy delivery charge to the corporate fleet buyer. For more information on Audi’s corporate vehicle program, visit

BMW's 328i.
BMW's 328i.

BMW North America

BMW North America’s executive fleet program is offered for drivers who are eligible under their company’s vehicle policy program to get a vehicle as part of their employment package, get a monthly allowance from the company to pay for a vehicle, or get a true “Company Car” from their employer, or from a fleet or leasing company.

Corporate drivers and fleet managers are given high priority at BMW through membership in the BMW program, according to Drew McClelland, corporate sales manager, BMW North America. Some of the benefits of purchasing or financing a new BMW include:

● Fleet pricing to approved corporate customers holding a valid fleet account number (EPAN) for factory order or off-lot purchases.

● Fleet incentives are applied to dealer invoice/cost.

● BMW and MINI Service includes no-cost maintenance for four years/50,000 miles, and roadside assistance for four years/unlimited miles.

● Preferential rates for BMW Performance Driving School courses.

● Access to a dedicated fleet representative at participating BMW dealers.

● A dedicated corporate sales team at BMW of North America, available to answer any questions.

● New vehicle delivery can also be accommodated at the BMW Performance Driving Center in Spartanburg, S.C., adjacent to the BMW factory.

● Invitations to specific BMW model-launch events, where fleet managers can see the latest BMW models and learn about features and technological innovations.

McClelland is seeing many fleets beginning to use the company vehicle again as a recruiting or retention tool for eligible employees, as the economy continues to improve. “With the large amount of experienced and qualified job seekers in the current market, being able to attract and retain the best-of-the-best is a critical challenge,” McClelland said. “Providing a BMW or MINI maintenance program and our low total cost of ownership, the range of BMW and MINI vehicles can significantly contribute to a lower fleet cost.”

The BMW Corporate Fleet Program is also actively working with companies that have fleet sales. “We also see a slight raising interest in returning the ‘true executive’ driver to a reimbursement or allowance program. With some of the pending tax changes, this has again become a topic of conversation; however, it is very fleet specific,” McClelland noted.

For more information, visit

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