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Keep on trucking

Another major side-effect of the recession has been revealed this week – fleets are running their cars and vans as long as they possibly can before considering replacing them.

According to data from Epyx, an e-commerce expert, some companies have not replaced their vehicles since the onset of the recession, some even running them into a fifth year and notching up more than 150,000 miles.

So are companies forsaking new, bright and shiny, for better the devil you know? According to head of business development at Epyz, Ken Trinder, it appears that some businesses are “effectively abandoning the concept of the traditional fleet replacement cycle”.

“They look as though they might be set to run their vehicles further still and, in doing so, are moving into unknown territory for fleets in terms of age and mileage,” he added.

Surprisingly, however, these vehicles do not seem to be wilting under the strain, with analysis suggesting most are dealing well with the high mileages.

So, as well as using fuel cards to keep costs as low as possible, it seems many businesses are preferring to run their vehicles as long as possible to avoid the cost of replacing them. However, even though Epyx claims that the cost of keeping them on the road is not yet becoming excessive and there are no indications that risk management compromises are being made, could this be a false economy due to the significant changes in new vehicle fuel-efficiency in the last five years?

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