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January 2017, Automotive Fleet - WebXclusive

2017 Fleet Management Trends: Telematics

Photo via Amber Case/Flickr.

By Paul Clinton

Consolidation among telematics providers in 2016 could create opportunity in 2017 for greater differentiation, increased connectivity, better pricing, and more standardization of features for fleets who add this technology, according to fleet management company experts.

Tags: ELDs, Fleet Management Companies, Mergers & Acquisitions

January 2017, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Introducing the Work Truck eXchange Conference

Photo by Chris Wolski.

By Chris Wolski

The first-ever Work Truck eXchange (WTX) was designed to allow a small group of fleet managers and fleet suppliers to connect and build professional relationships in a relaxed setting.

Tags: Bobit Business Media, Work Truck Magazine, Fleet Events

January 2017, Automotive Fleet - Feature

How to Effectively Back Up Using Rearview Cameras

Photo courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Andy Lundin

Rearview cameras can reduce the blind spot zone behind a vehicle by approximately 90%. However, the technology doesn’t eliminate the need for drivers to turn around and look.

Tags: IIHS, Safety Technology, Backup Camera, Backing

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Meet the 2016 Fleet Visionaries

Merchants Fleet Management’s Dan Hannan and Tracy DuRocher (center) pose with some of the 2016 Fleet Visionary Awards winners, including (l-r) Nikith Rajendran, Dave Mansfield, Amy McAdams, Jane Manca (on behalf of Nick Richardson), Jeff Moody (behind Manca), and Sharjeel Wattoo. Photo: Jim Park

By Chris Wolski

The inaugural class of 20 Fleet Visionaries has made a difference in the way their companies are run today and are poised to become the leaders of tomorrow. The award, sponsored by Merchants Fleet Management was presented to deserving fleet professionals with 10 years or fewer in the fleet industry.

Tags: Fleet Visionary Award, Awards

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

The Importance of In-Vehicle Safety Technology

In 2015, 2.2% of all drivers were observed texting or otherwise manipulation hand-held devices, according to data comiled by Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

By Andy Lundin

With features such as frontal and radar-based collision avoidance systems, blind spot warning, cross traffic alerts, and rear-view cameras, it is important to educate drivers to rely on their senses.

Tags: Vehicle Safety, Driver Behavior, Driver Education

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - WebXclusive

5 Fleet Manager Challenges in 2017 and Beyond

By Paul Clinton

As part of the annual re-set to a new calendar year, we polled several leading fleet managers to get their take on the top pain points they must diagnose in the year ahead.

Tags: Cost-Cutting, Customer Service, Senior Management, Procurement

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Motorlease Celebrates 70th Anniversary

Photo of vintage racing at Lime Rock Race Way courtesy of Ashley Enns Photography.

By David Deslauriers

Founded in 1946 by Daniel Leary Sr., Motorlease is a family-run business managed by its third generation.

Tags: Motorlease Corporation, Fleet Management Companies, Company Anniversaries

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

Top 7 Telematics Developments of 2016

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.com.

By Chris Wolski

There can be little argument that 2016 was a significant year for the fleet telematics industry with mergers, 2G sunsetting, and the increasing use of connected technology among the top developments for the year.

Tags: AT&T, Verizon Networkfleet, ELD Mandate, Connected Car

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Future of Element Detailed at Fleet Roundtable

Photo of the Element Fleet Management roundtable courtesy of Element.

By Mike Antich

The roundtable brought together hundreds of customers, OEMs, and fleet service providers to discuss issues impacting the next generation of fleet management.

Tags: Fleet Management Software, Roundtable Meeting, Element Fleet Management, Fleet Events

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

NETS Benchmark Conference Attracts Record Attendance

Photo of the conference courtesy of Mike Antich.

By Mike Antich

Attendance for the annual NETS benchmark conference has grown every year since its inaugural conference in 2007.

Tags: NETS, Fleet Events, Multinational Fleets

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - WebXclusive

Fleet Vulnerability to DDoS Is Low, For Now

Graphical representation of the areas affected by the Mirai bot during the October 2016 cyberattack on the Dyn network. Illustration: DownDetector via Wikipedia

By Chris Wolski

There was a renaissance in distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks in 2016. While the threat against fleets is low, for now, fleet managers need to be on guard as technology such as autonomous vehicles, vehicle-to-infrastructure, and IoT technologies mature.

Tags: Internet of Things, Vehicle Hacking, Autonomous Vehicles

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

IARA Celebrates 15th Anniversary at 2016 Summer Roundtable

Photo of the conference courtesy of IARA.

By Mike Antich

With Canadian membership its fastest growing segment, the IARA wanted to give credence to the “International” part of its name by holding its first Roundtable Conference outside the U.S.

Tags: IARA, Wholesale Market, IARA Summer Roundtable

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - WebXclusive

How to Manage Holiday Traffic

Photo via Ted Kerwin/Flickr.

By Chris Wolski

While consumers are enjoying the holiday season, flocking to malls and taking to the roads, many fleet managers and their companies’ fleets may be experiencing seasonal challenges due to increases in traffic, inclement weather, and other factors.

Tags: WEX, Holiday Driving, How-to Guides

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

FTX's Second Annual Expo

Photo by Thi Dao.

By Chris Wolski

The 2016 Fleet Technology Expo tackled a host of forward-looking topics; chief among them was the future of autonomous vehicles. Attendees also had the chance to test-drive vehicles featuring advanced technology.

Tags: Bobit Business Media, Fleet Technology Expo, Fleet Visionary Award, Awards

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

2016 AFLA Conference Engages Fleet Managers

Photo courtesy of AFLA.

By Mike Antich

The 2016 AFLA Conference attracted 494 fleet professionals from six countries. The conference theme was “Mission Possible: Identify, Engage, Execute.”

Tags: Fleet Hall of Fame, AFLA Conference, Fleet Events, Fleet Manager of the Year, Awards

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Ford F-150 Wins 2016 Fleet Truck of the Year

Photo of the Ford F-150 courtesy of Ford.

By Andy Lundin

The light-duty truck has a maximum towing capability of up to 12,200 pounds, also features its award-winning Pro Trailer Backup Assist.

Tags: Ford F-150, Automotive Fleet, Fleet Truck of the Year, Ford, Awards

December 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Chevrolet Malibu Wins 2016 Fleet Car of the Year

Photo of the Chevrolet Malibu courtesy of General Motors.

By Andy Lundin

The Chevrolet Malibu saw big changes going into its ninth generation for the 2016-MY and 2017-MY, including the introduction of its first full hybrid model.

Tags: Chevrolet, Automotive Fleet, Fleet Car of the Year, Chevrolet Malibu, Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Cheat Sheet to Capitalizing on Fleet Data

Graphic courtesy of iStockphoto.com.

By Staff

These four simple reminders can help you make sure that your fleet is taking full advantage of the benefits that telematics can bring to any operations.

Tags: Big Data, Gamification, Crash Avoidance Technologies

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Maintenance, Safety, and Compliance Aided by Telematics

Graphic courtesy of istockphoto.com.

By Staff

In fleet management, when it comes to these three important aspects that often require paperwork and tracking multiple moving parts, fleet managers can turn to telematics software to make those tasks a little less stressful.

Tags: Vehicle Diagnostics, Driver Behavior, Advanced Driver Training Services, Compliance, ELD Mandate

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

Moving Forward and Beyond with Telematics

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.com.

By Staff

Organizations and businesses running a fleet of any type or size can gain deep insights into operations using telematics data today. What began as track and trace technology has become so much more — but what’s next?

Tags: Resale Value, Predictive Analytics, Connected Car, V2V

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

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

PM Transaction Costs Up But Longer Intervals Keep Costs Flat

Graph courtesy of Element.

By Mike Antich

The auto OEMs continue to adopt more stringent motor oil requirements, which increases the cost of each PM service. But, the intervals between services have continued to widen, mitigating some of the additional costs.

Tags: preventive maintenance, Synthetic Oil, Oil Change, Diesel Engines, Maintenance Costs, Operating Costs

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Fleet Maintenance, Repair Costs Remain Flat

Charts courtesy of Element

By Mike Antich

Fleet maintenance costs have remained flat over the past 12 months, compared to CY-2015, despite price increases in replacement parts and labor rates. The primary factor keeping prices flat is overall vehicle quality.

Tags: Repair Costs, Safety Recalls, Maintenance Costs, Operating Costs

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Stable Commodity Prices Keep Replacement Tire Costs Flat

Graph courtesy of Modern Tire Dealer.

By Mike Antich

Replacement tire prices for CY-2016 are flat because of less volatility in the global prices of commodities used to manufacture tires, namely oil, rubber, and steel. The forecast is for a continuation of price stability into CY-2017.

Tags: Operating Costs, Replacement Tires, Tire Costs, Tires and Wheels, Truck Tires

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Analysis of 2016 Fleet Fuel Spend and 2017 Forecast

Chart courtesy of Energy Information Administration

By Mike Antich

The stability of gasoline and diesel prices over the past 36 months has been the No. 1 factor contributing to keeping fleet operating costs flat. Vehicle acquisition and used-vehicle prices are strongly influenced by low fuel prices.

Tags: Operating Costs, Fuel Prices, U.S. Energy Information Administration, Forecast

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Operating Costs Flat for Fourth Consecutive Year

Graphic courtesy of iStockphoto.com.

By Mike Antich and Andy Lundin

With fuel representing 60% of a fleet’s total operating costs, lower fuel prices are keeping overall fleet costs flat. Also, vehicle build quality is high, curbing maintenance costs, and lower commodity prices have stabilized tire prices.

Tags: Operating Costs, Fuel Management, Passenger Cars, Fleet Management Companies, Full-Size Vans, Light-Duty Trucks

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

How to Curb Aggressive Driving Behaviors

Image courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Andy Lundin

Speeding, sudden lane changes, and failure to yield are the most common aggressive driving behaviors that lead to fatal crashes.

Tags: Driving Dynamics, Speeding, MVRs, Aggressive Driving

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Editorial

Fleet Managers Are Meeting Change Head on

Dan Frank (right) along with Bobit Business Media Group Publisher Sherb Brown (center) congratulates AF Professional Fleet Manager of the Year George Survant. Photo courtesy of AFLA.

By Dan Frank

While this year has seen some rapid changes, with more to come thanks to the evolution of regulatory oversight and the advent of advanced technology, fleet managers are taking the changes in stride.

Tags: Wheels Inc., AFLA Conference, Awards, Fleet Manager of the Year

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

Meet the 2016 AF Professional Fleet Manager of the Year

Photo of Survant courtesy of Shahar Azran.

By Chris Wolski

The senior director of fleet for Charter Communications was honored during the recent Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association (AFLA) conference in San Diego.

Tags: AFLA, Automotive Fleet, Charter Communications, Fleet Manager of the Year, Awards

November 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

VW and Audi 2017 Fleet Preview

A walkaround product demonstration was given to fleet attendees of the all-new 2017 Golf SportWagen 4Motion. Photo courtesy of VW.

By Mike Antich

More than 90 fleet managers and suppliers attended the two-day fleet preview, which included product demonstrations and ride-and-drives.

Tags: Audi, Volkswagen, 2017-MY, Fleet Previews

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Element Discusses GE Capital Integration, Industry Changes

Photo of Kristi Webb and Brad Nullmeyer (right) courtesy of Element Financial Corp.

By Mike Antich

In a wide-ranging interview, the leadership of Element Fleet Management provide an update on the integration of the fleet business of GE Capital and offer insight on current industry trends and their vision of the future of fleet.

Tags: GE Capital Fleet Services, Element Financial, Element Fleet Management, Mergers & Acquisitions, Information Technology

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

13 Ways to Improve Order-to-Delivery

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.com.

By Mike Antich

Key areas for improvement are the development of better forecasting tools and greater collaboration between all logistics partners in the supply chain. Also, more transportation and rail infrastructure investment is needed.

Tags: Emkay, Wheels Inc., Donlen, ARI, LeasePlan, Merchants Fleet Management, Order to Delivery, Element Fleet Management, Fleet Management Companies

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

GM Mexico's Garza Examines Mexican Fleet Market

Photo of Garza courtesy of GM Mexico.

By Mike Antich

Presently, there are 34 million vehicles in operation in Mexico, of which 34% are commercial vehicles. The majority of large fleets operating in Mexico are owned or leased by multinational companies.

Tags: Oil Prices, Mexico, General Motors, Vehicle Exports

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Opel's Stahl Discusses Growing Fleet Business

Photo of the Opel Vivaro courtesy of Opel.

By Steven Schoefs

Building on Opel’s successful first quarter, Wolfgang Stahl, shares his plans to continue this momentum by introducing new models, financing options, and other services for fleet customers.

Tags: Fleet Europe, Opel, Opel Mokka

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Lower Commodity Prices Impact GDP for Venezuela, Ecuador, & Colombia

Graphic courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Mike Antich

Venezuela and Ecuador are heavily dependent on petroleum exports, as is also Colombia, but to a lesser extent. The steep drop in crude oil prices and other commodities is severely impacting these countries.

Tags: Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, State of Fleet Market Report

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

The Benefits of Route Optimization

Graphic courtesy of iStockphoto.com.

By Chris Wolski

Routing has evolved from simply getting a driver from point A to point B. Today’s GPS routing and telematics solutions have made routing more efficient, safer, and dynamic.

Tags: GPS Insight, Telogis, Routing, Autonomous Vehicles, WEX, Geotab, CalAmp, Azuga, Driver Behavior, Mapping

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Effective Metrics for Rewarding Positive Driving

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.com.

By Paul Farrell

The use of incentives may be a productive part of a well-rounded and well-executed fleet driver safety program, but it should never be used as a shortcut to deliver results when underlying practices may be incomplete.

Tags: Employee Incentives, Online Training, Fleet Safety Program

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

The Risks of Eating and Driving

Photo courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Andy Lundin

Eating or drinking while driving ranks just below holding or talking on a cellphone when it comes to prevalence of behaviors that distract drivers.

Tags: Accident Prevention, IIHS, Distracted Driving

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

37% Annual Inflation Rate Batters Fleet Sales in Argentina

Graphic courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Mike Antich

In addition, there has been a 20% decline in fleet sales in neighboring Uruguay. The peso has depreciated and the government has decreased fleet purchases.

Tags: Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, State of Fleet Market Report

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Chile and Peru Economies are Benefitting from Low Oil Prices

Graphics courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Mike Antich

Peru is one of the fastest growing economies in Latin America, and the economy of Chile is ranked as a high-income economy by the World Bank.

Tags: Peru, Chile, State of Fleet Market Report

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

Political and Economic Turmoil Contracts Auto Market in Brazil

Graphic courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Mike Antich

Automotive sales declined 28.6% year-over-year during 1Q 2016. In the fleet market, all major OEMs are using various financial incentives to defend their market shares. The 2016 forecast is that there will be 123,000 fleet sales.

Tags: Brazil, State of Fleet Market Report

June 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

New Zealand Fleet Market Conditions for CY-2016

Graphic courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Mike Antich

Despite economic headwinds dampening demand for its exports into China, auto sales in New Zealand during calendar-year 2015 hit an all-time record for commercial and retail vehicles. Sales continued to be strong in early 2016.

Tags: New Zealand, State of Fleet Market Report

June 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Commercial Sales Increase 2.8% in Canada despite Economic Headwinds

Map courtesy of Canadian Automotive Fleet

By Mike Antich

As oil prices have dropped, the growth in fleet sales has shifted from the oil-rich provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan to the manufacturing provinces of Ontario and Quebec, which have influenced the types of vehicles acquired.

Tags: Canada, State of Fleet Market Report

June 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

The State of the Australian Commercial Fleet Market

Chart courtesy of General Motors.

By Mike Antich

Although acquisition costs are a key factor for vehicle selection decisions, fleet application, fuel economy, CO2 emissions, safety, and overall TCO continue to play important roles in the purchase decision-making process.

Tags: Australia, State of Fleet Market Report

June 2016, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

The U.S. Commercial Fleet Market Continues to be Strong

Photo of Ed Peper courtesy of GM.

By Mike Antich

The forecast is that the commercial fleet market in the U.S. will remain strong well into the 2017 calendar-year. Stimulating this ongoing business activity is steady growth in the national economy, low fuel prices, and low interest rates.

Tags: State of Fleet Market Report, General Motors, Fuel Costs

June 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Analysis of Q1, Q2 Fleet Market Conditions in Brazil

Chart courtesy of General Motors.

By Mike Antich

Brazil is in a political and economic crisis that has caused the country’s auto market to shrink 27% in 2015-CY, and is forecast to shrink another 13% in 2016. Fleet sales have also decreased, but at a slower pace than retail sales.

Tags: Brazil, State of Fleet Market Report

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

FCA Showcases 2017 Lineup

Photo courtesy of Chris Wolski

By Chris Wolski

FCA showed off its entire lineup for automotive journalists, including the all-new Chrysler Pacifica and its full range of commercial products.

Tags: Jeep, Dodge Charger, 2017-MY, FCA, Chrysler Pacifica

October 2016, Automotive Fleet - Cover Story

2016 Order-To-Delivery Times Comparable to MY-2015

Graphic courtesy of istockphoto.com

By Mike Antich & Andy Lundin

Fewer quality holds and a mild winter contributed to stable OTD times. However, strong retail demand and low fuel prices have led to extended lead times on popular pickups and SUVs, along with ongoing railcar shortages.

Tags: Emkay, Wheels Inc., Donlen, ARI, LeasePlan, Merchants Fleet Management, Order to Delivery, Element Fleet Management

September 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Toyota's 2016 Fleet Executive Meeting

Photo of Paul Jontig (at podium), national fleet sales manager for Toyota; giving an overview of Toyota’s fleet and product strategy courtesy of Mike Antich.

By Mike Antich

More than 150 fleet professionals attended the meeting, which included representatives from corporate fleets, fleet management companies, and daily rental companies.

Tags: Toyota, Fleet Previews, Toyota Safety Sense, Safety Technology

September 2016, Automotive Fleet - Feature

Ford's 2017 Fleet Preview

Photo courtesy of Ford.

By Staff

Several MY-17 Ford vehicles were available to drive on eight different test tracks at the preview’s drive experience. Preview attendees included 900 of Ford’s top commercial, government, and rental customers.

Tags: 2017-MY, Fleet Previews, Ford

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Mike Antich
Why the Fleet Manager Should be the Gatekeeper to Procurement

By Mike Antich
The strategic procurement process typically involves a multifunctional sourcing team. This cross-functional team often designates a “gatekeeper” responsible for controlling the flow of information to the group. When selecting a fleet supplier, I strongly believe the fleet manager needs to be the gatekeeper. Here are the arguments supporting this assertion.

Cost Control is Constrained Without Driver Buy-in

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2017 VW Golf Alltrack SEL

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The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack is a Golf SportWagen, but brawnier, with VW’s 4Motion all-wheel-drive as standard.

2017 Mercedes-Benz E300 4Matic

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Nobody Asked Me, But...

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Five Unpredictions for 2017

By Sherb Brown
We may not be able to predict the future here at Automotive Fleet, but we can confidently predict that 2017 will be very interesting.

Fleet Success Comes From Sticking to Just the Facts

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Dylan Brown
Does Telematics Branding Translate to Adoption?

By Dylan Brown
We asked over 750 fleet professionals questions about the prevalence of each provider in the market and their brand recognition.

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Thinking of the Newbies of the Future

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Managing a Car vs. Work Truck Fleet

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