March 8, 2022

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Editor’s Analysis & Top Industry News

The Four Pillars of Fleet Success

Organizations that operate vehicles in New Jersey need to be aware of a new state law that goes into effect on April 18, 2022. In NJ Law to Require Drivers Be Informed When Vehicle Tracking Devices Are Installed, Art Liggio gives us the parameters of the new law and rules that some other states have adopted.

Fleet Success Summit
This conference takes place in Phoenix, Arizona April 20-21. Here’s what the organizers say,

“It’s a gathering of fleet professionals who are looking to go beyond the status quo and achieve success at their fleet organization. This inaugural two-day event will feature 12 speakers who will take center stage to divulge how to achieve the four pillars of Fleet Success: Stakeholder Satisfaction, Intentional Culture, Resource Efficiency, and Risk Management, and why these are so pivotal to your operation’s overall success.”

Drive Safety,

Janice Sutton
Editor in Chief

VIDEO: AI-Driven Automated Vehicle Inspections in Seconds

AI-driven automated vehicle inspections can let you know about any critical issues in seconds, and that means improvements to uptime, efficiency and safety for your fleet.

VIDEO: The City of Austin

  Emerging Technologies Focus at the City of Austin Fleet

The Emerging Technologies Program is one of the key parts of the City of Austin’s Fleet. Its focus is to look at and build upon advanced automotive technology on multiple fronts including alternative fuels, EVs, telematics, car sharing and also the city’s sustainability goals.

VIDEO: NAFA I&E in Columbus

  Pre-Conference at NAFA I&E: A Guide to FMCSA Maintenance and Compliance

Don’t miss the pre-conference event at NAFA I&E that will provide a guide to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration maintenance and compliance.


WIFM Mentorship Program: Sign Up Now

The WIFM Mentorship Program pairs various levels of experienced professionals who are hoping to gain knowledge and perspective.

This engaging program pairs mentors and mentees based on identified areas of focus submitted in the sign-up process. All AFLA members are both welcomed and encouraged to participate.

The next pairing deadline is May 13, 2022. If you would like to be paired before the next deadline, click here


Webinar: Vehicle Fleet Technology for Local Governments

Join Agile Fleet’s free live webinar, “Vehicle Fleet Technology for Local/County Government Fleets,” Thursday, March 24 at 2 p.m. Eastern, featuring fleet expert Ron Katz of Agile Fleet and representatives from the fleet of Scott County, MN.

This timely webinar will focus on how government organizations are using technology to maximize the utility of their fleets, realize savings and get back more money when remarketing assets, and balance unexpected change and decentralization in innovative ways.

CLICK to REGISTER and to learn more.

NHTSA 2020 Crash Data is Grim — ‘We Have a Deadly Crisis on Our Nation’s Roads’

Despite a downturn in vehicle crashes and injuries from the previous year, the occurrence of fatal crashes increased in 2020, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which just released its annual traffic crash data.

There were 38,824 lives lost in 2020 crashes, the most road fatalities since 2007. This was in spite of the fact that total vehicle miles driven decreased by 11% in 2020 from the previous year (from 3,261,772 million to 2,903,622 million).

In nearly half of these deadly accidents, speeding, alcohol, or failure to wear a safety belt played a major role.


Motiv’s Next Gen EV Truck Battery Tops 150 Mile Range — Milestone for Motiv Medium Duty EV with 3-Ton Payload

New Modular Technology Features Option to Extend Battery Range to More than 200 Miles on a Single Charge

Motiv Power Systems has new field test results on its next-generation technology that redefines range and payload limits for daily-use commercial fleet vehicles.

Motiv is partnering with the Michigan-based developer of innovative energy storage technology, Our Next Energy (ONE), for battery technology for Motiv’s 6th generation all-electric vehicles – which are currently in testing and will launch in early 2023.


Safety & Risk

By Art Liggio

A new state law, which takes effect on April 18, 2022, will have a significant impact on fleet-based organizations operating in New Jersey.

Signed in January by New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, fleets will have to inform company drivers when installing GPS tracking devices in vehicles.

To comply with the law, employers will be required to provide written notification to current drivers and new hires or could face fines of $1,000 for the first violation and $2,500 for each violation thereafter.

Using GPS and other telematics devices certainly provides many benefits to fleets, helping to improve efficiency and also compliance with driver safety policies. However, lawmakers are saying drivers deserve to know when companies collect data about them as part of business operations.



The Truck Driver Shortage

Telematics May Be the Key

By Oswaldo Flores, Product Manager, Teletrac Navman

From barren grocery store shelves to a disturbing lack of onion rings at your favorite local eateries, the problems caused by the ongoing supply chain disruptions are manifesting in all kinds of different ways.

The biggest – and most direct – cause of these woes is the massive shortage of truck drivers, estimated to be a record high of 80,000 by the American Trucking Associations in 2021 and likely an even larger gap now.

Pandemic-related friction, new remote employment opportunities, a more competitive job market and the realities of an aging workforce have created a perfect storm of resignations and retirements that fleet owners have found themselves tasked with navigating.

Throughout 2022, help may be on the way from a rather unexpected source: teenagers.



USPS Trucks

By Mike Sheldrick, Senior Editor

t’s a question that everyone wants answered. How is it, during a dramatic transformation of automotive industry from internal combustion engines (ICEs) to EVs, that USPS – the U.S. Postal Service — is replacing its aged fleet of delivery trucks with between 50,000 and 165,000 miles, with ICE powered trucks?

Under pressure after that announcement last month, USPS relented slightly and said that the trucks could be converted to EVs, or could be electric, without furnishing any additional details.

So, while the Electric Mail Truck is not dead, it’s future is uncertain. And the answer, sadly, is not simple. A favorite target, especially of the left, is Postmaster Louis De Joy, a Trump ally. Many Democrats have called for his ouster, but the Post Office is independent of executive branch, by legislation that was passed in 1970.



GM, PG&E Developing Ways to Use EVs for Home, Grid Power Backup

March 8, 2022General Motors is teaming up with PG&E, one of the nation’s largest utilities, to see if battery-electric vehicles can help address the increasing strain on the country’s electric grid.

A growing number of new battery-electric vehicles are being equipped with “bidirectional charging.” Also known as “vehicle-to-load,” or “V2L,” it allows an electric vehicle to reverse the flow of current, using its current to power lights, appliances, even a whole home. Eventually, energy could be fed back into the grid itself, supplementing traditional energy sources.

With the typical California home using 20 kilowatts of energy per day, a vehicle like the Chevrolet Bolt EV, with a battery pack of about 60 kilowatt-hours, could keep the lights on for up to three days.

via The Detroit Bureau

Ford + ‘Reimagines the Future’ with Ford Model E and Ford Blue Divisions

Under the Ford + plan, as introduced last May by Ford President and CEO Jim Farley, the company will continue its global automotive business evolution with the formation of two distinct divisions.

Ford Model e will focus on the development and growth of electric and digitally connected vehicles, while Ford Blue will be dedicated to both existing and newly developed internal combustion engine vehicles (ICE). Both divisions will tap Ford’s well-established legacy regarding engineering and manufacturing capabilities.

“This isn’t the first time Ford has reimagined the future and taken our own path,” said Ford Executive Chair Bill Ford


Russia’s Ukraine Invasion Could Trigger a Second Microchip Crisis

March 5, 2022Both Russia and Ukraine are home to key gases and raw materials needed for the production of semiconductors around the world. The ripple effects of the war could exacerbate the microchip crisis as raw materials become harder to come by.

Ukraine is the source for 70 percent of the world’s output of neon. Neon is not the only raw material at risk because of the war. Russia provides about one-third of the world’s palladium. Palladium is used in semiconductor manufacturing and is critical to catalytic converters.

Automakers had to cut 10.4 million vehicles out of global production plans last year because of the semiconductor shortage, with an additional 656,200 axed so far in 2022. Automakers could cut at least 1.3 million vehicles by the end of this year.

via The Car Gossip

Kia Will Enter Electric Pickup Truck Segment

March 5, 2022Starting next year, Kia will launch at least two new battery-electric models (BEVs) per year with a goal to expand the lineup to 14 BEVs by 2027. 

Besides the Kia EV6 – launched in 2021, and its upcoming GT version, the plan includes the Kia EV9 flagship SUV set for launch in 2023, two electric pickup trucks, and “an entry-level BEV model”. In the United States, where mid-sized SUVs and pickups are popular, electric versions of these models will be produced locally from 2024.

via InsideEVs

Gas Prices on the Rise

March 6, 2022This weekend, the national average price for a gallon of gasoline went above $4 a gallon in the U.S for only the second time ever. The last time this happened was in 2008.

At some stations in Los Angeles, premium fuel was selling for $7.25 a gallon this week. Gas in the Philadelphia area hit $4.05 a gallon late last week, an increase of 43 cents in the past month. San Francisco also hit $5 a gallon.

GasBuddy released a statement saying that, while international sanctions that are crippling Russia’s crude oil exports are one cause of the price spike, that’s not the only reason to expect fuel prices to continue to rise. “Seasonal factors including increased demand for gas, refinery maintenance and the switch to summer blend gas, on top of current geopolitical tensions, could propel prices upward of $4.25 per gallon by Memorial Day,”

via Car and Driver


Automation Trends

March 4, 2022We’re not there yet, but the era of self-driving vehicles is coming into focus this year. Cars with important and differing levels of automation will hit showrooms like never before. Here are some big names and tech to watch in 2022.

Mercedes-Benz is expected to launch the first mass-production Level 3 car in 2022 using its Drive Pilot technology. General Motors is focused on doing the most it can within Level 2 assistance which can give you physical but not mental relief from the driving task. GM’s current Super Cruise tech will evolve into the lidar-equipped Ultra Cruise in 2023.

Ford is evolving its driver assistance tech as BlueCruise that work on 130,000 miles of roads in North America, maintaining set speed, vehicle spacing, lane tracking, stop-and-go operation and posted-speed-limit recognition. Tesla CEO Elon Musk maintains the company will offer something close to Level 4 self driving by the end of this year.

via Roadshow


Fleet Marketing

By Ed Pierce, President of ITA Communications. Fleet.

As a marketing manager for a provider of B2B products or services, you know that the first question your executives will ask is “Where’s the value?” of each of your marketing tactics.

Even though we are in the digital age, you can’t justify marketing value based on Facebook “likes,” Twitter “follows,” and LinkedIn connections.

As it was unlikely that management would appreciate the value of traditional print advertising measures like cost-per-thousand, impressions, awareness and perceptions, the digital metrics provided by internet metrics can be found wanting.

Still, digital marketing offers value, as evidenced by its growing share of the overall marketing budget. The key to showing value is to do the additional hard work to translate and extend superficial facts with meaningful business results.


Fleet Management Resources


The Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association. Advancing corporate fleet worldwide.

The fast, easy way to remarket without risk. Get an offer in hours, paid in a few days. Improve TCO. Save time, money and resources.

PARS’ mission is to provide you with high-quality service at competitive prices for all of your transportation needs.

Driving Dynamics
Driving Dynamics was established to help corporate fleet drivers develop expert, safe driving skills using proven, advanced driving techniques.

Fleet Street
Fleet Street has 30+ years of experience and knowledge using a spectrum of wholesale and retail channels to simplify your involvement in the remarketing process.

SuperVision is a fleet driver management solution for MVR & license monitoring, fleet management, fleet safety oversight and driver performance and retention.

eDriving partners with its clients to engage with drivers and their managers to create a culture that supports lasting behavioral change to reduce collisions, injuries, license violations as well as a fleet’s total cost of ownership.

NAFA Fleet Management Association
NAFA is the association for the diverse vehicle fleet management profession regardless of organizational type, geographic location, or fleet composition.

Wheels, Inc.
First in fleet for 80 years. Wheels helps you build tomorrow’s fleet today.

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