March 13, 2018

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Editor's Analysis & Top Industry News

Trump’s Terrible Tariffs

Trump’s steep import tariffs on steel and aluminum are unpopular with virtually all sectors of the auto industry, both at home and abroad.

In an NBC News article, Cody Lusk, President and CEO of AIADA, says: “Even with limited exemptions, tariffs will raise the sale price of new vehicles, turning off price-sensitive consumers and leading to a dip in both auto sales and auto-related jobs.”

None of this is good news for commercial fleets.

Lots of excitement in Indianapolis last week. Mark Boada tells us all about it in GM, Ford Dominate the News at The Work Truck Show.

Enjoy the issue and visit our newly-redesigned website for daily updates.

Janice Sutton
Editor in Chief

Thought Leadership

Customer Driven — Engage your organization to create customer loyalty, trust, and superior service

Fleet Asset Management – Best practices for work truck management

Fleet Marketing – Guiding principles for fleet providers to improve marketing and increase sales

Fleet Spectator A 360 view of the fleet industry

Globally Speaking — Perspectives on the multinational fleet

In the Public Interest — Successfully managing the government fleet

On Fleet Driver Management Solutions to improve your fleet’s accident rate and cut costs on collision repairs

Safety & Risk — Impactful driver safety and risk management tools and techniques

The Fleet CX Toolbox – Solid steps to implementing and improving fleet customer experience

Think, Execute, Win!Leadership tips from NBA Star and motivational speaker Walter Bond

VIDEO: The Work Truck Show Highlights New Products and Innovations

When it comes to new products and innovations in the work truck space, The Work Truck Show is the place to see them unveiled!

VIDEO: Creative Upfitting Solutions

 Ranger Design Creates the Perfect Fit

When it comes to upfitting, Ranger Design delivers by custom-designing creative solutions that make fleets more effective.

VIDEO: A Transportation First

 The World’s First All-Electric Pickup Truck

Workhorse debuted the world’s first all-electric pickup truck at this year’s Work Truck Show. It’s designed primarily for fleets.

The Fleet Spot

WEX Inc. Introduces First Proprietary Payments Solution for Mixed Fleets: Cross Roads™

WEX Inc. today announced the latest addition to its innovative line of fleet cards—WEX Cross Roads, the new one-card solution for fleets requiring unleaded and diesel fueling options at BOTH truck stops and convenience stores.

WEX developed Cross Roads with mixed fleet customers to create one of the first fully closed-loop networks across retail and high-speed diesel locations.


Donlen Launches New Order Management System

Donlen announces the release of a new order management system available in its award-winning fleet management platform, FleetWeb®.

Donlen’s order management system provides fleet professionals with full visibility to each stage of the vehicle ordering process from the minute the order is placed to the moment the vehicle is safely delivered to its driver.


Webinar: Safer With Sensors: Modernizing Your Fleet Safety Program

Safer With Sensors: Modernizing Your Fleet Safety Program

Date: 03/21/2018
Time:12:00 – 1:00 PM EST
Instructor: Eleanor Horowitz, Product Marketing Manager, Samsara

In this webinar, learn how modern sensor technology can provide a live window into what’s really happening on the road — and how you can use this information to build a comprehensive program that gets buy-in and results.

Register now!

Get Out of Your Own Way!

By Walter Bond, Hall of Fame Business Speaker & Former Big Ten & NBA Basketball Player

It’s another start to the day. Another start to a new week or new month. But what happened? What happened to the plan of attack you created? What happened to the strategies you determined would get you from here to there?

Aren’t you tired of doing the same thing over and over again only to realize it’s not delivering “‘Your Best.” That your approach is NOT getting you to the next level?

But why do we keep doing things that don’t lead us to the harvest we want? Why do we think we can do things our old way and get something new? It never happens and it never will. It’s time for us all to Get Out of our Own Way. What do I mean by that?


Fleet Spectator

By Mark Boada, Senior Editor

Indianapolis may not be everybody’s ideal destination for early March, but it was the place to be last week as The Work Truck Show set records for product unveilings and press conferences. It also made for a lot of exciting news for the light- and medium-duty markets.

General Motors grabbed top billing, as it used the show to unveil its brand-new Chevy Silverado 6500-HD, the top of the line model in its re-entry this year into the Class 4 through 6 market. The rest of its new lineup includes the Silverado 4500-HD and 5500-HD trucks.

Ford made its own splash with the unveiling of its updated Transit Connect small delivery van for 2019. The big news is that the model includes the first diesel engine in the segment, a 1.5-liter turbodiesel it expects to earn an EPA rating of more than 30 mpg on the highway.



Last Week in Geneva

Pictured: Thilo von Ulmenstein, Managing Partner of fleetcompetence europe GmbH

For the fifth year, the International Fleet Meeting took place as part of the Geneva International Motor Show. Participants were hosted by top-class speakers including Michael Müller, Senior Director Head of Mobility & Facilities, Daiichi Sankyo Europe GmbH, and Marc A. Odinius, Managing Director, Dataforce GmbH. An exciting panel discussion and opportunities for informal networking rounded off the event.

March 8th, the second media day of the motor show, was dedicated to the fleet sector where 250 fleet managers and representatives of the automotive, leasing and service industries from all over the world met at the International Fleet Meeting. The two co-organizers, fleetcompetenceeurope GmbH and the Swiss fleet magazine aboutFLEET, offerred the international fleet industry ia unique, English-speaking platform.



On Fleet Driver Management

By John Wolford, Vice President, Business Process, Quality, and Sourcing

The longer a fleet vehicle is out of service because of an accident, the more it’s costing your organization in lost revenue and productivity or in rental fees for a temporary replacement.  That’s why keeping your fleet’s average repair cycle time under control should be a constant priority.

Which raises two questions: how long should collision repairs take, and what can a fleet manager do to make them as short as possible?  The answer to the first is, every repair is different, but the time it should take is roughly related to the estimated cost. The answer to the second lies in identifying the most common reasons repairs can take longer than they should or could.

READ MORE to learn how to manage the repair cycle time.

Fleet Trends & Issues

The Next Hot Transportation Option Tops Out at 15 MPH

CNN Money

Electric scooter-share systems are getting noticed in cities as an affordable commuting alternative to cut down on pollution and traffic congestion.

Santa Monica, California has become the first U.S. city to have an electric scooter-share service where users find and unlock one of the more than 1,000 scooters with a smartphone app.

“It took a couple years for the mass market to realize this is not a toy industry or for rich people,” said URB-E CEO Peter Lee. “But this solves an everyday commuter problem, no matter your social class or how much you make. It was seen as a novelty three years ago, but now it’s seen as a necessity.”

Read the article at CNN Money.

Growth of Electric Vehicle Market Means Increased Production for Chevy Bolt


According to CEO Mary Barra, General Motors will increase production of the Chevrolet Bolt later this year as global demand continues to grow.

The Bolt, which has a range of about 238 miles, was the top-selling electric vehicle in California last year, with 13,487 registered in the state.

“In the U.S., electric vehicles from all manufacturers have access to about 17,000 public charging stations, but additional stations will be needed as more consumers discover the benefits of EVs. This is particularly important because the growth of the electric vehicle market will support other innovative and advanced mobility solutions like car-sharing, ride-sharing, and self-driving vehicles,” Barra said.

Read the article at Newsweek.

Pedestrians Take Priority in Musk’s Hyperloop Plan

Bloomberg Technology

Elon Musk’s tunneling startup, the Boring Co. has begun digging test sites for its hyperloop plan – a tunnel-based transportation system.

The Boring Co.’s “urban loop” would have thousands of small stations, each about the size of a parking space, where people can hop on and off, getting passengers closer to their destinations and “blend seamlessly into the fabric of a city, rather than a small number of big stations like a subway.”

The system “will still transport cars but only after all personalized mass transit needs are met,” Musk wrote on Twitter. “It’s a matter of courtesy and fairness. If someone can’t afford a car, they should go first.”

Read the article at Bloomberg Technology.

Automakers are Lagging on Safety Features

The Detroit News

The Obama administration received pledges from twenty automakers committing to voluntarily equip all of their passenger vehicles with automatic emergency braking by September 2022.

Only four of 20 automakers in 2017 equipped at least half of their U.S. models with standard automatic emergency brakes, which automatically apply the brakes when a front collision is imminent.

Safety advocates say the remaining automakers have little incentive to keep their promises regarding safety technologies because the Trump administration has shown no urgency about enforcing the deadline or pushing for other life-saving technologies.

Read the article at The Detroit News.

A Future for Diesel?

Green Car Reports

Diesel power for Mercedes cars is here to stay, even as electric cars and electrified mobility spreads throughout its passenger and commercial vehicles, and even its global partnerships.

Despite a German court ruling that said cities could legally ban older diesels in an effort to reduce dangerous levels of nitrogen oxides that contribute to air pollution, Daimler will not change its diesel strategy.

“Customers around the world have distinct needs,” said Ola Källenius, head of Daimler research and product development added that it would be “unwise” for Mercedes-Benz to rule out diesel altogether as a choice. Källenius says the diesels his company now sells, and those currently under development, emit 15 to 20 percent less carbon dioxide than their gasoline counterparts.

Read the article at Green Car Reports.


Getting Things Done

Fast Company

As the end of the week approaches, do you start feeling the panic rise as you review the remaining to-dos on your never-ending list?

You’ll sit there at your desk, staring at the list, and rack your brain for where you should start and how you should finish. Ten minutes later, you’ll probably still be there.

Instead of making yourself do the work later (when you’d rather maintain some workday momentum and just get started), write down a next step (i.e., an “action item”) for every project on your to-do list in advance. Every time.

Read the article at Fast Company.


Who Will Tariffs Hurt?

NBC News

Trump’s recent move to impose hefty new tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum producers may quickly backfire and hurt precisely those who supported candidate Trump, especially workers in the U.S. auto industry.

Steel imports will now face 25 percent tariffs, while aluminum will be subject to new 10 percent duties – prices for cars could go up by hundreds of dollars, analysts warn.

“The exact impact of the new tariffs on the auto industry is unclear, in part because there are so many different sources of parts and components that go into the typical vehicle. Manufacturers and their suppliers are trying to figure the precise cost, said Joe Phillippi, head of AutoTrends Consulting, but he estimates it will be $200 to $300 a car. Some have put the figure significantly higher, and the number could vary widely by manufacturer.”

Read the article at NBC News.

Fleet Management Resources
AFLA – Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association
Providing the advanced forum for corporate fleet professionals to network with industry leaders.
The CEI Group Inc.
CEI is North America’s largest provider of fully integrated fleet accident management, driver safety and risk management services.
NAFA Fleet Management Association
NAFA is the association for the diverse vehicle fleet management profession regardless of organizational type, geographic location, or fleet composition.
Offering a nationwide vehicle delivery and relocation service; serving the corporate and commercial fleet industry.
Since 1965, Donlen has been the fleet management industry’s leading provider of comprehensive, integrated financing and asset management solutions — and that spirit of innovation continues today.
PARS' mission is to provide you with high-quality service at competitive prices for all of your transportation needs.
Driven fleet professionals. Driving results.
Driving Dynamics
Driving Dynamics was established to help corporate fleet drivers develop expert, safe driving skills using proven, advanced driving techniques.
Wheels, Inc.
First in fleet for 79 years. Wheels helps you build tomorrow’s fleet today.

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