Market Trends

State of the Australian Commercial Fleet Market in CY-2016

Procurement, as elsewhere in the world, has gained increased influence in fleet purchase decisions in Australia. One byproduct has been the growing trend to sole-source from a single OEM. Although acquisition costs are a key factor, fleet application, fuel economy, CO2 emissions, safety, and overall TCO continue to play important roles in the purchase decision-making process. READ MORE

Tags: Australia, Novated Leases, Market Conditions

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, March 14, 2016 6:14 PM | » Comments(1)

Collapse of Oil Prices and Ruble Devaluation Negatively Impacting Russian Fleet Market

The Russian economy is in a recession, with the gross domestic product (GDP) shrinking 3% in 2015. This economic downturn is widespread, with output falling in key sectors of the economy. The overall fleet demand in the Russian market is down, primarily due to the volatility in the exchange rates for the ruble and its impact on new-vehicle pricing. READ MORE

Tags: ALD Automotive, Russia, Oil Prices

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, March 7, 2016 2:29 PM | » Comments(0)

Top Trends in Global Fleet Management

There are dramatic differences between regional fleet markets around the globe. Yet, despite these differences, there are also many similarities. Many of the challenges facing fleet managers are identical to the challenges facing their counterparts managing fleets elsewhere in the world. READ MORE

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Sunday, February 28, 2016 10:26 AM | » Comments(1)

Identifying the Next Generation of Corporate Fleet Managers

Fleet management will increase in complexity with the pervasive use of technology and emphasis on data analytics. This will attract new employees with different skillsets. Despite what cynics may say, now is the best time to get into fleet management. It is at the corporate crossroads of technology, sustainability, supply chain management, and safety. Fleet will be very attractive to managers because of the exposure to these cross-functional groups and the opportunity for advancement. READ MORE

Tags: Technology, Big Data, Millennials, Career Advancement

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Wednesday, February 24, 2016 9:08 AM | » Comments(1)

Commercial Fleet Sales in Canada Forecast to be Flat in 2016-CY

Automotive retail sales in Canada hit a record of 1.89 million new vehicles sold in calendar-year 2015. This is the third consecutive year of record retail sales in Canada. Commercial sales, on the other hand, were a different story. Cumulative sales in the commercial fleet market were flat year-over-year compared to 2014. The forecast is more of the same for CY-2016. READ MORE

Tags: Canada, Commercial Fleets, Global Fleet Market

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Tuesday, February 16, 2016 7:17 PM | » Comments(0)

The Impact of the 'Smart' Windshield on Fleet Operations

The windshield is a critical safety component of a vehicle, protecting passengers in the event of a rollover and aiding in proper airbag deployment. However, the windshield is no longer just an independent part comprised of a vinyl interlayer sandwiched between two pieces of glass. What is changing is that windshields are becoming more technologically integrated with the rest of the vehicle. READ MORE

Tags: Safety Technology, Safelite, Industry Events, Windshields, Lightweighting

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Tuesday, February 16, 2016 9:03 AM | » Comments(2)

10 Ways Fleet Managers Can Avoid Being Under-Rated by Senior Management

There is an ongoing perception by senior management that fleet management is not a complicated and sophisticated profession. As a result, one of the biggest challenges facing fleet managers is getting management to recognize and acknowledge their contribution to the company. Here are 10 ways to ensure management recognizes your contribution to the company’s bottom line. READ MORE

Tags: Fleet Management, Recognition, Fleet Manager, career advice

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, February 1, 2016 10:21 AM | » Comments(2)

Finding the Right Balance: Over-Spec’ing vs. Under-Spec’ing Trucks

Spec’ing a truck is a complicated process no matter where you are in the world. Building the right truck requires hundreds of decisions and choices – and each choice potentially impacts another. Where it gets tricky is finding the balance between over-spec’ing and under-spec’ing a truck, each with its own unique set of consequences. READ MORE

Tags: Spec'ing, Medium-Duty Trucks, Light-Duty Trucks, Heavy-Duty Trucks, Vehicle Spec'ing

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Tuesday, January 26, 2016 7:58 AM | » Comments(3)

Encroachment Blurs Traditional Fleet Responsibilities at Multinational Fleets

Many interdepartmental and operational conflicts that intersect at fleet are typically driven by the challenge of balancing HR/driver requirements versus finance/procurement requirements, which are often at odds, with the gains in one area negatively impacting the other. And, the hard reality is not all department or operational managers are team players and, as a result, there are the inevitable interdepartmental (and personal) conflicts. READ MORE

Tags: Multinational Fleets, Human Resources, Strategic Sourcing

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Tuesday, January 19, 2016 5:00 PM | » Comments(1)

Migration of U.S. Fleet Management to the European Fleet Model

I can envision internal and external political and economic pressures that could prompt the U.S. fleet market to migrate to a European fleet business model offering company-provided vehicles as a form of compensation. READ MORE

Tags: United Kingdom, Taxation, Salary Sacrifice

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, January 11, 2016 9:21 AM | » Comments(0)

Common Misunderstanding about the European Fleet Market

Photo: Nexus Communication

Non-European fleet managers of multinationals often attempt to extrapolate their local fleet norms to other global fleet markets, with the most common misunderstanding occurring with the European fleet markets, which, cumulatively, is the world’s largest fleet market. Here are some examples of differences that can lead to misunderstandings: READ MORE

Tags: Europe, Global, Global Fleet Conference

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Tuesday, January 5, 2016 12:50 PM | » Comments(0)

Truck Overloading is an Ongoing Safety, Risk Management & Operating Cost Problem

Not only is an overloaded truck in violation of numerous state and federal regulations, it is unsafe to operate. As statistics show, year-after-year, overloaded trucks are one of the leading causes of truck-related accidents. In addition to safety concerns, an overloaded truck is costly to maintain and operate. READ MORE

Tags: Liability, Overloading, Cargo Securement, Cargo Storage

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, December 28, 2015 4:01 PM | » Comments(3)

Industry Dialogue Needed to Ensure Regulations Don’t Impede Advances in Fleet Technology

A watershed moment occurred July 21, 2015, with the introduction of a first-of-its-kind bill, the Security and Privacy in Your Car Act. It directs NHTSA to conduct a rulemaking to issue vehicle cybersecurity regulations against unauthorized access to electronic controls or driving data. There are number of stakeholders in the “OBD ecosystem.” In addition to government regulators and auto OEMs, important OBD stakeholders include fleet managers, aftermarket suppliers, and industry associations. READ MORE

Tags: Vehicle Hacking, NHTSA, telematics, OBD

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Tuesday, December 22, 2015 9:29 AM | » Comments(1)

NHTSA’s New 5-Star Crash-Test Criteria Will Increase Safety and Acquisition Costs

Graphic courtesy of NHTSA.

On Dec. 8, 2015, the U.S. Department of Transportation proposed upgrading the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 5-Star Safety Rating system for new vehicles by adding new standards for accident-avoidance technology, which will make it much tougher for OEMs to achieve a 5-Star Rating. Without a doubt these safety technologies are beneficial, but they cost money and will also exert upward pressure on new-vehicle acquisition costs. What are the full fleet implications? READ MORE

Tags: NHTSA, Accident Management, Crash Tests

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, December 14, 2015 9:22 AM | » Comments(0)

Do Your Drivers Know their Company Vehicle is not Equipped with a Spare Tire?

As a fleet manager, it is your responsibility to let drivers know their company vehicle is not equipped with a spare tire. The danger is many drivers do not know their vehicle doesn’t have a spare – until they need it. Drivers often say they were never told their new company vehicle didn’t come with a spare. Approximately 36 percent of model-year 2015 vehicles were not equipped with a spare tire. This compares to 5 percent in 2006. READ MORE

Tags: Tires, Fuel Economy, Driver Safety

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Friday, December 4, 2015 10:32 AM | » Comments(0)

The Popularity of Euro-Style Vans to Put Upward Pressure on Euro-Metric Replacement Tire Costs

Sales of Euro-style vans exceeded total sales of traditional body-on-frame vans for the first time in 2015. This is an important milestone in the evolution of the fleet van market, but the rapid market share expansion of Euro-style vans will have a near-term impact on replacement tire availability, which, in turn, will exert upward pressure on pricing. READ MORE

Tags: Tires, euro style van, euro-metric tires, p-metric tires, LT-metric tires

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, November 23, 2015 8:20 AM | » Comments(0)

Flat Fuel Prices Forecast to Extend Through 2016

Lower prices for gasoline and diesel have been a welcome relief for fleets, in some cases, reducing operating costs by 25-30 percent. While the past three years have been heaven-sent for the fleet industry overall, it has had a dramatic impact on fleets operated by energy companies, which are scrambling to cut costs to offset the decline in oil prices. The unfortunate fact of life is that one person’s fortune is sometimes another’s misfortune. READ MORE

Tags: Diesel Prices, Gasoline Prices, Operating Costs

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, November 2, 2015 3:13 PM | » Comments(0)

Operating Costs Flat for Third Consecutive Year

Calendar-year 2015 marks the third consecutive year that fleet operating costs have remained stable compared to the past three years, primarily due to the continuing softness in gasoline and diesel prices. Replacement tires, the second highest operating cost, were stable due to the ongoing softness in commodity prices, primarily rubber and oil, while increased maintenance intervals contributed to lower maintenance costs for fleets. The forecast is more of the same for CY-2016. READ MORE

Tags: Operating Costs, Replacement Tires, Fuel Management, Maintenance Costs

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Friday, October 16, 2015 11:49 AM | » Comments(1)

Managing Fleet with a Long-Term Perspective

If you implement fleet programs that contribute to the achievement of overall company-wide goals, you will get the attention (and praise) of senior management. You must view vehicle acquisition, replacement planning, funding alternatives, and sourcing alliances with manufacturers and suppliers as high-level strategic corporate decisions. Without long-term planning, it is impossible to have a well-managed fleet. READ MORE

Tags: Senior Management, Fleet Operations, Supply Chain Management, Corporate Goals, Fleet Metrics

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Thursday, October 15, 2015 6:52 AM | » Comments(2)

Increased Demand and Rail Delays Create Upfitter Logjam in MY-2015

One challenge for both the 2015- and 2014-MY has been the increased volume of fleet vehicles going to upfitters, which has resulted in capacity constraints. With the increasing demand and growth of the commercial truck and van segments – particularly among utilities and service industries – the percentage of upfitted vehicles is growing. Upfitters are feeling the pressure of increased demand. READ MORE

Tags: Upfitting, 2015-MY, Order to Delivery, Rail Cars, antich

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Thursday, September 17, 2015 4:43 PM | » Comments(0)

High-Roof Vans Causing OTD Delays

Railroad backlogs impacted ship-thru units requiring upfitted equipment in the 2015-MY. Not only is there a rail-car shortage, but there were also logistical delays in loading and unloading rail cars due to the higher volume of high-roof vehicles. The limited number of rail cars that can accommodate the larger, high-roof vans created a backlog at assembly plants and caused delays in shipping to and from upfitters. READ MORE

Tags: Order to Delivery, Delivery Delays, Rail Cars, Full-Size Vans, Ship-Thru

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Thursday, September 17, 2015 3:50 PM | » Comments(0)

New Category of Fleet Manager to Gain Legitimacy

For the past several decades, FMCs have employed in-house fleet managers in their fleet administration departments to manage client fleets, but were promoted from within the FMC. Now, we are starting to witness FMCs hiring traditional fleet managers. Does this make a trend? It is still too early to tell, but, what I can say is that it has caught our attention. My prediction is that this is indeed the start of a bona fide, long-term, industry trend that will accelerate in future years. READ MORE

Tags: Outsourcing, Fleet Management Companies, Career Advancement

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Thursday, August 6, 2015 10:34 AM | » Comments(2)

Vehicle Abuse: An Overlooked Remarketing Cost

The resale value of a used vehicle is determined by three factors: the unit’s age, total mileage, and overall condition. A used company vehicle in poor condition, because of driver abuse or neglect, will result in lost resale value or incur unnecessary reconditioning expense at auction. Here's what you can do to minimize vehicle abuse. READ MORE

Tags: Resale Value, Vehicle Abuse, Used Vehicle Sales, Risk Management

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, August 3, 2015 12:24 PM | » Comments(1)

Impact of Chinese Truck Tires on Fleet Aftermarket

One factor driving the deluge of Chinese exports of replacement truck tires to the U.S. is China's immense tire production overcapacity. In 2015, China manufactured 120 million tires, with an overcapacity rate of almost 25 percent. The influx of Chinese truck tires is also having a detrimental effect on the tire retreading industry, because many of these “bargain” tires have only one life because they cannot be retreaded. READ MORE

Tags: Tires, Replacement Tires, China, Regulations, Tariffs

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Sunday, July 26, 2015 10:05 AM | » Comments(0)

Why Element Wants to Buy the Fleet Businesses of GE Capital

Element Financial Corp. has reached a definitive agreement to buy GE Capital's fleet assets in the U.S., Mexico, Australia, and New Zealand. Separately, Arval will acquire the European portion of GE's fleet business. READ MORE

Tags: GE Capital Fleet Services, Australia, New Zealand, Element Financial, Mergers & Acquisitions, Fleet Management Companies

Author: Mike Antich | Posted @ Monday, July 20, 2015 9:51 AM | » Comments(0)

Author Bio

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Mike Antich

Editor and Associate Publisher

Mike has covered fleet management and remarketing for more than 20 years and entered the Fleet Hall of Fame in 2010.


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