Today, operators of van fleets face many challenges from fluctuating fuel prices to downtime to driver safety and productivity.
For over a decade, the UK van rental market has typically offered users generic sized vehicles with the customers accepting this as the norm and being happy enough to make-do with their choice between standard off-the-shelf SWB or LWB vans.
However, in the past 18 months, most of the major manufacturers, Mercedes-Benz, Ford, Vauxhall and Citroen have freshened up their commercial vehicle line-ups with the introduction of new models and there is now more choice than ever for the customer on body length, roof heights, FWD/RWD, specifications and optional extras.
“We have always run this size of van” is a mindset which can be challenging to overhaul but our experiences in the past 12 months confirm that businesses that are willing to review their fleet vehicles are benefitting from reduced van hire and running costs by right-sizing their fleet. With the variety of new-sized vans available, whether it’s a fleet of 2 or 3 vehicles or 400 or 500 vehicles, there are potential significant savings to be unlocked by identifying the ideal sized van for your business.
Focus on Fuel Economy & Downtime
With fuel costs being one of the biggest expenses to any business running a van fleet, the focus in recent times on fuel efficiency has resulted in intolerance for running with excess load space or running with a heavier weight vehicle than required.
In challenging economic times, pressures on businesses to run their fleets efficiently cannot be ignored and, with that, has come a heightened awareness of fuel economy, downtime and factors which can impact on these areas. More and more, our customers across all industry sectors are asking us about fuel economy prior to making van decisions and we have been noticing an exponential increase in requests for us to fit speed limiters and vehicle telematics to ensure there are adequate controls and reporting on fleet efficiency.
Vehicles Specific to Your Business’ Requirement
Customers are starting to challenge their fleet's 'status quo' under pressures to reduce fleet expenditure. We have seen some significant savings by downsizing fleets into more appropriate sized vans for their jobs. Generally speaking, the smaller the van, the lower the relative hire and running costs and consequently a decision to downsize tends to result in vehicle hire savings for the customer.
During the rest of 2015, we predict that there will be more and more fleets moving away from traditional van sizes and instead making conscious and informed decisions on what specific models are just right for their business and their industry. With that in mind, our flexible rental fleet is adapting to suit by purchasing more and more vans with dimensions which would previously have been considered unorthodox and ‘oddball’.
We would recommend that any fleet manager contemplating such a change commits to a demonstrator programme for some of the various-sized vans under consideration and takes account of the whole picture behind the decision; fuel efficiency, suitability for your operation, uptime/downtime and the effect this can have on your business should all be given due consideration. We are able to provide all shapes and sizes of vehicles and this diverse range of fleet means we are well placed to help advise you on right-sizing your fleet.
When was the last time you reviewed your van fleet to check the size of vans you are running are optimal for your business needs?
Get in touch with any of our team today to discuss right-sizing your fleet. Our no-obligation fleet review will pinpoint achievable savings for your business and we are happy to provide a suitable demonstrator programme so you can see the savings in action.
Don't miss out on all our latest news, offers and goings-on, follow us on LinkedIn for regular updates.