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50th Anniversary - Publisher Notes

50th Anniversary

BarbaraBarbara Bobit pinch-hit for her father from the 1970s all the way through a recent editorial she wrote in the AF 50th Anniversary issue.
Read her columns and personal insights here.




Ed 2000s

“While the function of fleet manager has changed dramatically with the advent of
outsourcing, there remain some very critical areas where this staff member is "king"
or "queen" (in my book). The key arena where this is especially so is the company's
relationship with the driver (every vehicle has one). Even with the outside fleet
management company fielding all driver calls with an 800 number, it is still the fleet
manager's compelling responsibility to intimately know the pulse of the drivers. What
do we know about drivers? They are human, often selfish, demanding, forgetful,
sometimes lazy, and too many times very difficult to communicate with.“
-Ed Bobit, August 2003

Ed 90s

“Let me hasten to state (or re-state) that I've consistently been one of the strongest
supporters of fleet managers and their lot in life, which rarely offers them the focus of
a corporate spotlight, even though it may be well deserved. Recently, though, we
contacted several readers who control larger fleets (names you'd undoubtedly
recognize). We wanted to develop an objective evaluation of the '94 factory fleet
incentives, compared with the '93 model incentives. The results of our search were
most disappointing. Numerous contacts adroitly came up with reason why they were
not the right people to talk to for this analysis. High on the list of reasons for deterring
was, "I don't buy any X-brand (domestic factory) cars, so I'm not familiar with their
program." In response, I asked myself. "How can you he rational and objective in
evaluating your purchase and selection process without carefully studying all the
-Ed Bobit, October 1993

ED 80s

“No one can accuse the auto marketer's fleet groups of having a stiff attitude when it
comes to incentives. Perhaps the exposure to all the retail funny-money incentives for
the buyer off the street has inspired the manufacturers' fleet directors to add a dash of
Tabasco and some exotic herbs to the 1989 fleet incentive programs. For some
makers it was almost a status quo, with little change from several past years, while
others have broken new ground with innovation.”
-Ed Bobit, August 1988

 Ed 70s

“Ralph Nader, the self-appointed Bob Hope of the world o automotive safety, initiated
his plea for the consumer in Washington with Detroit in mind, but has caught the
attention of a concerned audience nationwide and so has extended his "act" into
Peoria, Shelbyville and Dubuque, covering such other areas as sports in the major
leagues and over-booking on airlines. His gag-writers have been selected from some
of the most liberal and astute young law grads and students that his studio can locate.
In spite of this, he now appears to be playing to something less that a full house.”
–Ed Bobit, May 1978

Ed 1960s

“The new 1966 model car year begins as one with high optimism for continued
strength in the fleet and leasing business. The already spectacular growth of new car
registrations in fleet and leasing is still soaring, making the industry benchmark of
15% per year continued growth seem on the low side. During 1963 R. L. Polk counted
some 516,000 new cars that were registered by fleets buying ten or more during the
year. In 1964 this figure rose to 590,000; and while the largest fourth quarter in history
is predicted for the next three months, there is little question that total year-end fleet
sales will be well in excess of 600,000. These figures have more of a direct meaning
when you find that one out of every twelve new cars enters our market.”
–Ed Bobit, October 1965


Since 1961, Ed Bobit Has called'em like he sees'em. Read through our archive of some of his columns, his rants (and raves) on everything from seat belt use to the effect on the fleet industry of the import car makers.


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