Managing the Financial Side of Commercial Fleets

Vehicle Research

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November 2017, Business Fleet - Feature

TCO Champs: Crossovers or Sedans?

2017 model-year vehicles over a 36-month period with an average of 20,000 miles a year. Vincentric market price is based on invoice price plus destination charge minus published fleet incentives, if any. Cost data from Oct. 2, 2017. Regular fuel calculated at $2.49.

By Chris Brown

As consumers and automakers continue to migrate away from sedans toward crossovers, there are no clear winners when analyzing total cost of ownership of individual models.

Tags: Vincentric, Total Cost of Ownership, Crossovers

October 2017, Automotive Fleet - Feature

In-Vehicle Entertainment Proliferates for Fleet Drivers

Screenshot of AppLink courtesy of Ford.

By Paul Clinton

Commercial fleets, including those in the pharmaceutical industry, use an array of tools and perks, such as in-vehicle infotainment that can keep drivers entertained from Point A to Point B, to increase driver retention, as long as the drivers avoid distraction.

Tags: Infotainment Systems, Ford, Audiobooks.com, Drivers, SiriusXM, Safety, Driving Dynamics

October 2017, Government Fleet - Editors Corner

Can Fleets Subscribe to a Vehicle?

By Chris Brown

For fleets, technology is enabling a more efficient way to use vehicles, increase utilization, and more precisely match the type of vehicle to usage.

Tags: Carsharing, Shared-Use Mobility, Cox Automotive, Fleet Forward Conference, Flexdrive

February 2017, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Ford's 2017-MY Fleet-Only Options

Photo of 2017 F650/F-750 courtesy of Ford.

By Paul Clinton

Ford offers optional equipment available only to fleets that includes police telematics, orange seatbelts, and adjustable pedals.

Tags: Ford, 2017-MY, Optional Equipment, Ford Super Duty, Police Vehicles, Ford Transit

February 2017, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Fiat Chrysler's 2017-MY Fleet-Only Options

Photo of 2017 Ram 1500 Laramie Limited courtesy of FCA.

By Paul Clinton

Fiat Chrysler offers optional equipment exclusive to fleets to enhance off-road operation, cargo management, and vehicle security.

Tags: Ram 1500, 2017-MY, FCA, Optional Equipment, Police Vehicles, Ram Truck

January 2017, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Interview: BMW North America's Corporate Sales Manager

BMW 5 Series sedan M Sport, photos courtesy of BMW

By Mike Antich

BMW is a global fleet provider with operations in almost every country. BMW wants to expand its fleet market share in the U.S. by implementing an aggressive fleet strategy.

Tags: BMW, Mini Cooper, Fleet Sales, Selector Lists, Gasoline-Electric Hybrids, Executive Vehicles, Q&A

January 2017, Work Truck - Feature

Sprinter Charges Ahead

European-style vans, which were engineered for the narrow streets of Europe, adapt well to crowded urban environments. (Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz)

By Jack Roberts

Since its introduction to the North American market two decades ago, European-style vans have become a mainstay in the fleet industry. The van that started it all in America continues forging into the future.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Cargo Vans, Full-Size Vans, Diesel Engines

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - WebXclusive

2016 L.A. Auto Show: SUVs, Electrification, Mobility

Photo of 2019 Ford EcoSport by Paul Clinton.

By Staff

The mobility revolution is happening through greater connectivity, manufacturers' suites of transportation services, electrification, and the introduction of autonomous vehicles themselves. At the same time, manufacturers are placing the car at the center in this new world.

Tags: Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles, L.A. Auto Show, Mobility, Compact SUVs

September 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Mercedes-Benz Shows Fleet Managers E-Class Safety Tech

Photo by Chris Wolski.

By Paul Clinton

Mercedes-Benz hosted Southern California fleet managers at its new Vehicle Preparation Center for a demonstration of its redesigned 2017 E-Class.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz, Active Safety Systems, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Fleet Previews, Steering

May 2016, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

Mercedes-Benz: New Models Meet New Needs

Photo of 2017 E-Class courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.

By By Shelley Ernst

Mercedes-Benz plans to introduce 30 new models by 2020. What do fleets have to look forward to?

Tags: Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes-Benz GLC, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Mercedes-Benz GLS, Luxury SUVs, Luxury Sedans, 2016-MY, 2017-MY

March 2016, Fleet Financials - Feature

Jaguar's New 'Cat' In the Jungle

The 2017 Jaguar XE. Photo: Paul Clinton

By Paul Clinton

Jaguar's 2017 model-year XE will stalk its way into the competitive entry level luxury vehicle segment. The automaker is taking a more aggressive approach to fleet sales.

Tags: Jaguar, Tata Motors, Executive Vehicles, Infotainment Systems, Entry Luxury Cars, Jaguar XE

November 2015, Government Fleet - WebXclusive

Trends From the 2015 L.A. Auto Show

Photo of 2017 Buick LaCross by Chris Wolski.

By Staff

The 2015 L.A. Auto Show included a renewed focus on luxury models, experiments in disruptive technology such as hydrogen power and virtual reality-enhanced driving, sportier exterior and interior designs with more emotional appeal, and the rising popularity of electrified powertrains over diesel and other alternative fuel types.

Tags: Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles, L.A. Auto Show, Luxury SUVs, Trends, Virtual Reality

September 2015, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Volkswagen and Audi Preview 2016 Fleets

Photo courtesy of Volkswagen and Audi.

By Mike Antich

The 2016 model-year fleet preview for Volkswagen and Audi was held May 18-20, 2015, at the newly opened $100-million Porsche headquarters in Atlanta.

Tags: Audi, Porsche, Volkswagen, 2016-MY, Fleet Previews

September 2015, Automotive Fleet - Feature

GM Previews 2016-MY Fleet Vehicles

Photo courtesy of GM.

By Mike Antich

More than 850 fleet managers and fleet suppliers had an opportunity to test drive 180 GM vehicles at the company's 2016 Fleet Preview.

Tags: General Motors, Fleet Previews, 2016-MY

August 2015, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Ford Previews 2016-MY Fleet Vehicles

Attendees being briefed the automaker's 2016 product lineup. Photo courtesy of Ford.

By Mike Antich

Ford Motor Company held its 2016 model-year fleet preview at the Gaylord Texan resort in Grapevine, Texas, from May 4-6.

Tags: Lincoln, Ford, 2016-MY, Fleet Previews

May 2015, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

2015 Fleet Industry Report Card: OEMs

Photo via istock.com

By Mike Antich

The results are in for the third annual industry report card, validating that OEM fleet operations continue to do a very good job in meeting the needs of commercial fleet managers; however, there is room for further improvement.

Tags: Post-Warranty Recovery, Industry Report Card, Order to Delivery, Vehicle Manufacturing

March 2015, Fleet Financials - Feature

5-Year Trends in Executive Vehicle Selection

Photo of 2015 A4 courtesy of Audi.

By Adam Pringle

SUV registrations among luxury commercial fleet vehicles increased between 2009 and 2013, according to analysis of R.L. Polk data.

Tags: Executive Vehicles, Vehicle Registration, Luxury SUVs, BMW 3 Series, Audi A4, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, IHS Automotive

January 2015, Fleet Financials - Feature

How to Audit Contract Vendors: Ensuring Top Performance

Photo courtesy of iStockPhoto.com.

By Anonymous Author

With fewer in-house resources available to fleet managers than ever, a key remedy is to outsource what can't be done internally. However, once the contract is signed, performance must be measured, and vendors held accountable.

Tags: How-to Guides, Outsourcing, Audits

January 2015, Fleet Financials - Feature

How to Calculate Optimal Replacement Cycles

Data from an economic lifecycle analysis can be viewed as a chart to assist fleet managers in determining the best time to replcae a vehicle. Source: Chatham Consulting

By Sal Bibona

A variety of approaches can be used, each with their own advantages and disadvantages that must be considered.

Tags: Residual Values, Replacement Cycles, Repair Costs, Lifecycle Costs, How-to Guides

January 2015, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Fleet Management 2025 Forecast: New Vehicle Purchasing

Photo via wikimedia

By Mike Antich

Government-mandated CAFE standards are exerting pressure on OEMs to develop smaller, more lightweight models and add more alt-fuel vehicles and hybrids to their lineups. Lower fuel costs will shift TCO focus to depreciation.

Tags: Vehicle Purchasing, Forecast, Selector Lists, Fuel Costs, TCO

November 2014, Fleet Financials - Feature

How to Develop an Effective Selector Template

Photo via istockphoto.com

By Staff

One of the “fleet management basics” is determining vehicle selection: what type, make, model, and equipment are best suited to the company fleet mission.

Tags: Selector Lists, Vehicle Purchasing, TCO, Active Safety Systems, Spec'ing

September 2014, Fleet Financials - Feature

Mercedes-Benz Debuts All New 2015 C-Class Models

Assembled in the U.S., the 2015-MY C300 4MATIC model boasts improved fuel efficiency, with lightweighting being a key contributor. Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.

By Mike Antich

The C-Class is the top-selling model series for Mercedes-Benz. Two all new C-Class models will debut in MY-2015 - the C300 4MATIC with a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder and C400 4MATIC with a 3.0L bi-turbo V-6.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Mercedes-Benz, Luxury Sedans, 2015-MY

September 2014, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

Compact Vans: A Right-Size Revolution

Photos courtesy of Ford.

By Paul Clinton

With two models on the market and two on the way, compact cargo vans offer fleets functionality and versatility in a more economical package.

Tags: Ford Transit Connect, Nissan NV200, Chevrolet City Express, Ram ProMaster City, Compact Vans, Cargo Vans

May 2014, Fleet Financials - Feature

Reimagine Fleet Vehicles for Less

Canine Company went with vinal decals instead of a full vinyl wrap on its fleet vehicles.

By Amy Winter

One fleet translated its new corporate image onto its fleet vehicles at a fraction of the cost of a traditional vehicle wrap.

May 2014, Fleet Financials - Feature

Navigating the Executive Fleet Landscape

By Stephane Babcock

Fleet Professionals have to not only be able to please executives, but also adhere to the company's bottom line when managing an executive fleet.

Tags: Remarketing, Executive Vehicles

May 2014, Fleet Financials - Feature

Establishing Amortization Rates by Vehicle Class

By Anonymous Author

The open-end, TRAC lease allows fleet managers a great deal of flexibility in managing depreciation. One manifestation of that flexibility is allowing fleet managers to amortize vehicles based on vehicle class and usage.

Tags: Amortization, TRAC Lease, Vehicle Classes

May 2014, Fleet Financials - Feature

Company Vehicle or Reimbursement? Tips on Setting Fleet Policy

By Anonymous Author

A company vehicle is an important and treasured asset. Fleet managers need to use their professional judgment to determine who gets cars and who doesn’t.

Tags: Reimbursement, Company Vehicle, Total Cost of Ownership

June 2014, Automotive Fleet - Feature

2015 Audi A3 Sedan Targets Sales Fleets

Photo courtesy of Audi.

By Mike Antich

The A3 sedan will offer versatile powertrains, including a 1.8 TFSI, 2.0 TFSI, 2.0 TDI clean diesel, and a high-output 2.0 TFSI offered in the S3.

Tags: Audi, Audi A3, Luxury Sedan, Sales Fleets

May 2014, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Mercedes-Benz Reveals Insights for its MY-2015 Fleet Lineup

Photo of the Tuscaloosa, Ala., plant courtesy of MBUSA.

By Cheryl Knight

Thanks to a best-ever March 2014, Mercedes-Benz USA (MBUSA) hit a new first-quarter sales record in 2014 with 30,091 vehicles sold across the Mercedes-Benz, Sprinter, and smart model lines. Vehicles leading the way included the C-Class, E-Class, and M-Class model lines.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Prestige Luxury Cars, Clean Diesel

April 2013, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Mercedes-Benz Showcase: 2014 B-Class Electric Drive

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.

By Staff

Mercedes-Benz introduced the all-new 2014 model-year B-Class Electric Drive, its first luxury electric car in the market, at the 2013 New York International Auto Show in April.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes-Benz B-Class, Battery-Electric Vehicles

April 2013, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Mercedes-Benz Showcase: 2013 GLK-Class

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.

By Staff

The Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class sport utility has been redesigned for the 2013 model-year, with bolder exterior styling and an interior that reveals more eye-catching upholstery and a new dash that emphasizes the width of the cabin.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz, Compact SUVs, Mercedes-Benz GLC

April 2013, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Mercedes-Benz Showcase: 2014 CLA-Class

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.

By Staff

Mercedes-Benz is expanding its lineup with the all-new 2014 CLA-Class. The new four-door coupe, which made its world premiere in January 2013 at the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Berlin, takes its design cues from the CLS.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz, Entry Luxury Cars

April 2013, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Mercedes-Benz Showcase: 2014 E-Class

Photo courtesy of Mercedes-Benz.

By Staff

Mercedes-Benz introduces the extensively updated 2014 E-Class Sedan and Wagon, featuring highly efficient engines, an array of new driver assistance systems, and even more refined styling.

Tags: Mercedes-Benz, Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Luxury Sedan

December 2013, Automotive Fleet - Feature

2014 RAM 1500 Features New 3.0L V-6 EcoDiesel

Photo courtesy of Ram.

By Mike Antich

The small displacement 3.0L EcoDiesel engine offers V-6 capability with lower CO2 emissions, while the 240-hp turbo-diesel mated to the 8-speed TorqueFlite automatic enhances fuel economy and range.

Tags: Diesel Engines, Ram 1500, Pickup Trucks, Mid-Size Pickups, Ram Truck

January 2013, Fleet Financials - Feature

BMW Expands Its Presence in the Commercial Fleet Market

By Mike Antich

CY-2012 was a great sales year for BMW North America. Contributing to this sales effort was the BMW Group Corporate Fleet Program for the BMW and MINI brands, which has expanded its inroads into the commercial fleet market.

Tags: BMW, Fleet Sales

January 2013, Fleet Financials - Feature

How to Survive and Thrive in a Procurement Environment

By Staff

Increasingly, fleet managers find themselves interacting with procurement or purchasing functions. This can lead to confusion and frustration, unless fleet managers understand how to deal with procurement pros.

Tags: Procurement, Best Practices, Senior Management

January 2013, Fleet Financials - Feature

When an Extended Warranty Makes Sense...and When it Doesn't

By Sean Lyden

To determine whether an extended warranty is right for your fleet, review vehicle usage, lifecycles, and replacement policies.

Tags: Warranty, Extended Warranty, Replacement Cycles, extended vehicle lifecycles

November 2012, Fleet Financials - Feature

Damaged Vehicles: To Repair or Not?

By Staff

“Repair or replace” is one of the basic decisions fleet managers must make, often several times each year. Knowing the value of fleet assets, and collecting the right data, will help make the decision a simple one.

Tags: subrogation

October 2012, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Trends in Executive Fleet Vehicle Management

Audi's A6.

By Lauren Fletcher

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

Tags: Audi, Volvo, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Executive Vehicles

May 2012, Fleet Financials - Feature

Top 50 Executive Fleets

By Staff

The nation's top executive fleets represent a cross section of U.S. businesses.

Tags: Top Fleets, Executive Vehicles

March 2012, Fleet Financials - Cover Story

ADT Secures Its Fleet's Future

ADT's fleet drivers appreciate the Ford Transit Connects size and upfitted features, which allow technicians to easily access tools and grab ladders off the roof with ease.

By Lauren Fletcher

Increasing its use of smaller vans and splitting the fleet business units up presented challenges and opportunities for the security services fleet.

Tags: Ford Transit Connect, GE Capital Fleet Services, Ford, ADT

September 2011, Fleet Financials - Feature

BMW Sees Opportunity in the Commercial Fleet Market

BMW announced earlier this year that it will become a majorplayer in the all-electric and hybrid market with its i subbrand. Among its first offerings will be the i8 (concept above).

By Staff

After entering the U.S. fleet market in 2010, BMW expects to see its program grow over the next several years.

Tags: BMW, EPP, E-Mobility, Branding

July 2011, Fleet Financials - Feature

10 Ways to Become a Depreciation Management Pro

Flat rate depreciation uses the same reserve rate each month for the life of the vehicle, or until the vehicle has a zero-dollar book value.

By Michele Zeiler

In North America, depreciation is generally the largest operating expense for a vehicle fleet. Fleet managers must know what depreciation is, how it is applied, and how a corporate fleet program influences this key cost driver.

Tags: Depreciation, Fleet Incentives, Lifecycle Costs

July 2011, Fleet Financials - Feature

Three Ways to Screw Up Your Fleet Operation

Fleet managers need to be on the lookout for common, easy-to-make mistakes that can negatively impact operations.

By Staff

It’s nice to get suggestions and advice from experts on how to better manage your fleet. It’s also good to know what not to do. Here are three tried-and-true ways to screw up your fleet operation.

Tags: Fleet Management, Technology, fleet operating expenses

May 2011, Fleet Financials - Cover Story

Yerem Named 2011 Fleet Executive of the Year

By Shelley Mika

Communication, collaboration, and not to mention a number of highly successful initiatives led the three-year Nestlé veteran to the Fleet Financials honor.

Tags: Fleet Management, Fleet Executive of the Year, Nestle, Awards

May 2011, Fleet Financials - Feature

Taking Fleet Productivity to the Next Level

By Staff

“Productivity” is a word bandied about in business all the time, but what is it? How is it measured and achieved? In 2011, fleet managers have little choice but to answer these questions.

Tags: Fleet Management, Productivity

May 2011, Fleet Financials - Feature

‘Breaking’ the Rules to Optimize Performance

By Staff

Some call it thinking out of the box, pushing the envelope, or just plain breaking the rules. “Common wisdom” isn’t always the best way to keep a fleet running cost efficiently.

Tags: Vehicle Performance, Fleet Management, Replacement Cycles, Amortization, Maintenance

March 2011, Auto Rental News - Cover Story

How Best Buy Integrates Fleet Into Its Total Brand

(Left) Best Buy's Jason Pucely, senior manager of logistics & transportation, and Rosa Baumanis Hakala, VP, supply chain - transportation, stand with one of the "GeekMobiles," a black and white Volkswagen Beetle, one of the key icons of the company's brand.

By Cheryl Knight

Best Buy’s “GeekMobile” is a key icon of the company’s image. The unique nature of Geek Squad vehicles and the treatment of those vehicles help solidify the Best Buy brand as “quirky, trustworthy, and expert.”

Tags: Best Buy, Fleet Management, Emissions, Operating Costs

March 2011, Fleet Financials - Feature

5 Nominated for 2011 Fleet Executive of the Year

By Staff

Five professional fleet executives vie for the prestigious award, to be presented at the 2011 NAFA Institute & Expo in Charlotte, N.C.

Tags: Fleet Executive of the Year, Awards, Fleet Management

November 2010, Fleet Financials - Feature

Avoiding 5 Common Vehicle Ordering Mishaps

By Staff

Technology has helped make the vehicle ordering process as accurate and simple as possible, but it still requires human input. Five common ordering errors and how to avoid them are discussed.

Tags: vehicle order

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