January 18, 2023

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Editor’s Analysis & Top Industry News

Measured Approaches to Success

FMW talks with a good many industry leaders about fleet driver safety. This week, we feature an engaging interview with Ted Chen, one of the co-founders of LifeSaver Mobile. Chen says, “We tackle the number one cause of crashes by stopping the problem before it’s too late.”

Drowsy driving is another major contributor to global vehicle crashes. Now, NETS has developed a guide for safety professionals: Managing Fatigue for the Fleet Safety Professional. This free guide is available on the NETS website.

We are fascinated by how deftly the integration of powerhouse fleet management company Wheels Donlen LeasePlan is being managed. Shlomo Crandus gives us insight into how they’re doing it.

We’re thinking about Baltimore and the upcoming NAFA Conference: April 17-19! Register early and save a cool $200!

Janice Sutton
Editor in Chief

VIDEO: A Measured Approach Toward Integration, with a Focus on Clients

Wheels Donlen LeasePlan is taking a measured approach toward integration – with a focus on giving clients what they’re used to while developing new technologies they are going to need.

VIDEO: Valuing Supplier Relationships

  Why You Should Take Supplier Relationships Seriously

It’s important to understand the true value inherent in your supplier relationships so that both of your organizations can do their absolute best.

Zoom Video Interview with You Here?

  Request for Zoom Video Interviews

We now conduct the majority of our interviews via Zoom, and are looking to speak with a variety industry experts (and we know that many of you are reading!).

Please feel free to suggest yourself, or someone you know. Any and all timely industry topics will be considered, and we look forward to speaking with you!

Email Ted Roberts to learn more: [email protected].


Smith System Announces Acquisition of Driving Dynamics Smith System Acquires Driving Dynamics

Smith System Driver Improvement Institute, Inc., a portfolio company of Levine Leichtman Capital Partners, LLC, announced that it has acquired Driving Dynamics, Inc.

“Driving Dynamics brings a wealth of talent and an exciting complement of driver safety training capabilities and curricula to Smith System,” commented Tony Douglas, CEO and President of Smith System.

Debbie Balestra, Vice President and General Manager of Driving Dynamics, added, “We are excited to join Smith System and to serve our current and prospective customers with an expanded set of safety training capabilities.”


Poll: What Was Your 2022 Hiring Situation?

In The Fleet Poll this week, sponsored by our friends at FLD, Joe Lukacs from Sherwin Williams asks about your fleet hires last year. Specifically, how difficult was it for your fleet to find and hire qualified employees? Also, was your hiring situation in 2022 better or worse than 2021? Take the poll here.

When it comes to hot trends and burning questions, there’s plenty going on in the world of fleet — that’s why we’ve created The Fleet Poll (which gets updated every two weeks) to gauge industry sentiment around key topics dominating the fleet landscape. 


Fleet Success Summit 2023: Why It’s a Must for Fleet Professionals

By Steve Saltzgiver

Wow! It’s hard to believe we’re coming up on another year since the inaugural Fleet Success Summit was held in Mesa, AZ!

However, I’m really looking forward to our second event, March 21-22, 2023, at the Luxor Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas!

This year,  the slogan of “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” will be violated as attendees will take back some priceless fleet management gems and best practices to significantly improve their operations.


FMW Brand Acceleration FMW: New Branding and Marketing Support for Fleet Product and Service Providers

Customized Approach Ensures a Perfect Fit from Tactical Projects to Integrated Strategic Efforts

Whether your business has an internal marketing team, relies on an agency, or calls on multiple specialists, FMW has a new, customized, fleet-specific branding program — FMW Fleet Brand Acceleration – that can meet any marketing and sales generation need or budget.

It’s Easy to Get Started


LifeSaver Mobile Fights Distraction

Fleet Management Weekly had the opportunity to discuss LifeSaver Mobile with Ted Chen, one of the company’s co-founders, to learn more about how the company is fighting mobile distraction on the road.

How can LifeSaver Mobile change your fleet safety culture?

The phone is the biggest cause of accidents today in all drivers–not just commercial drivers. You should be looking for technologies that stop the problem from happening in the first place.

We tackle the number one cause of crashes by stopping the problem before it’s too late.



Managing Driver Fatigue

Driver fatigue is a major contributor to global vehicle crashes, injuries and deaths. Fatigue-related crashes are fully preventable when we understand the effects and impacts of fatigue on the safety of our fleet drivers and take actions to mitigate this driver risk.

NETS New Fatigue Management Guide is Now AvailableManaging Fatigue for the Fleet Safety Professional is now available on the NETS website. Free to access and Includes useful printable Fact Sheets and images for Social Media messaging.

NETS developed this guide for safety professionals responsible for managing light, medium or heavy vehicle fleets.



NAFA I&E in Baltimore


NAFA Fleet Management Association’s annual Institute & Expo keeps you thriving in today’s ever-changing landscape while discovering the trends that affect and influence your fleet’s success.

Thousands of fleet professionals from all sectors of fleet including corporate, government, public safety, utility, education, and more will gather in Baltimore, MD from April 17-19. Join them at the premier fleet event of the year by registering today!

Click Here and Save!



The Steep Plunge in Used Car Prices – What it Means, and What’s Ahead

While the prices of late model used cars are down only 5% off their peak according to Edmunds, the price of older used cars, those five years or older, have fallen 15% or more from their peaks early in 2022. The leading reason for the drop in used car prices is the increased supply of new cars.

The run-up in used car prices was a major driver in the nation’s overall inflation rate, adding about a full percentage point to the overall increase in consumer prices. Now it’s a factor helping to bring down the pace of inflation, shaving more than a third of a point off the overall rate in December.

This is obviously good news for those wanting or needing to buy a used car, though it can have a negative effect on car buyers by reducing the value of vehicle they hope to trade in.


Toyota Tops List for Cheapest Cars to Maintain Over a Decade

Few would be surprised at Toyota’s top ranking in the least-expensive cars to maintain over 10 years. Toyota typically ranks among Consumer Reports’ most reliable cars. 

This year Toyota took the top spot in the Most Reliable ranking and indirectly took No. 2, too: Lexus was ranked second ahead of BMW. It stands to reason that the fewer times a car is in the shop, the less expensive it is to maintain.

Toyotas, on average, have a 10-year maintenance cost of $5,996, with six models locking out the top six least expensive cars to maintain. CarEdge.com reported the Prius, Yaris, Corolla, Prius Prime, Camry, and Avalon were the Nos. 1-6 least-expensive models to maintain over 10 years, with the Honda Fit taking No. 7.

via The Drive

This is the Worst State in the U.S. to Drive In

The 10 worst places to drive include New Jersey, California, Michigan, New Hampshire, Nevada, Missouri, Maryland, Rhode Island, Delaware Washington and, at number 50, Hawaii. That’s right, Hawaii.

That’s the stunning conclusion of a new study by Wallethub.com, which measures 31 key metrics, including the cost of ownership and maintenance, traffic and infrastructure, safety, access to maintenance.

If you live in one of the “good” states, keep in mind the states with highest percentage of rush hour traffic congestion include Florida, Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland and California. Those with the lowest are New Mexico, North Dakota, Maine, and Mississippi.

The Detroit Bureau

NYC Mayor Announces Results of Successful Pilot Program to Reduce Speeding and Hard Braking in City Fleet Vehicles

New York City Mayor Eric Adams and NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Dawn M. Pinnock announced the preliminary results of active intelligent speed assistance (ISA) technology being tested in 50 city fleet vehicles and which has ensured almost universal compliance with local speed laws.

DCAS Deputy Commissioner and NYC Chief Fleet Officer Keith Kerman said. “New York City is focused on reducing speeding through street re-design, enforcement, and speed cameras. DCAS is now taking the next step, leading the effort to design a vehicle that can’t and won’t speed in the first place.”

Use of ISA technology also accounted for a 36 percent reduction in hard braking events, which is often an indicator of unsafe driving.

via NYC

Big Growth at Spiffy

Get Spiffy, Inc. is excited to announce 90%+ year-over-year revenue growth and the addition of new CFO, Brad Schomber. After extending its Series B round to $32 million in Q1 2022, the company drove this impressive growth through strategic execution across geographies, services, and lines of business.

Scot Wingo and Karl Murphy founded Spiffy in 2014 around four mega trends: the rise of the convenience-oriented customer, the hypothesis that services will go digital, the opportunity to provide a better automotive customer experience, and Vehicle 2.0 (i.e.vehicles will change more the next 10 years than in the last 110).

Spiffy saw significant movement in all four trends in 2022, despite economic headwinds. By the end of the year, the business was delivering between 3,000 and 4,000 services a day with over 500 W2 Technicians and 300 vans nationwide.




By Bill Bishop, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, FLD Remarketing

At the beginning of 2021 and 2022, I was privileged to write a year end/year ahead article for the folks at Fleet Management Weekly.

It’s also something we do for our own customers, partners and associates by producing and distributing our free White Metal Market Report, a look at the medium duty wholesale market that we publish each and every quarter.

Looking back on the predictions I made – and measuring them against the reality of what actually occurred – I would offer that I wasn’t far off in identifying what would become some of the most important trends that would follow.

And now, as we kick off another year, I’m ready to take a look back at 2022, and offer some thoughts on what I believe the fleet industry will experience in 2023.



Danger from Hackers

If you purchased a new car in the past few years, chances are good that it contains at least one embedded modem, which it uses to offer some connected services. The benefits are numerous and include convenience features like interior preheating on a cold morning, diagnostics that warn of failures before they happen, and safety features like teen driver monitoring.

In 2015 a pair of researchers proved they could remotely disable a Jeep Cherokee while it was being driven, via an exploit in the SUV’s infotainment system. Since then, security flaws have been found in some cars’ Wi-Fi networks, NFC keys and Bluetooth, and in third-party telematics systems.

Toward the end of 2022, a researcher named Sam Curry tested the security of various automakers and telematics systems and discovered security holes and vulnerabilities seemingly wherever he looked. The somewhat encouraging news is that the hackers’ discoveries resulted in the affected companies fixing their flaws.

via Ars Technica

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.

Helping vehicle fleets exceed their business goals since 1939, WheelsDonlen is committed to truly understanding your unique needs and providing solutions to help you succeed.

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