How to choose the right vehicles for your commercial fleet

May 7, 2019 10:10 pm | Peter Warren

Whether it's a few compact cars to help your sales team zip around New South Wales or a full force of commercial vans integral to your distribution and shipping operations, acquiring a fleet of company-owned vehicles is a big deal.

If you're getting ready to build your first commercial fleet, or are simply looking to grow, move forth with confidence by asking yourself these critical questions.

1. What will the vehicles be used for?

Your decision should start with the purpose of your company fleet and the category of vehicles you'll need.

Commercial vans will be your first port of call if your organisation will be transporting goods or equipment. For example, organisations in these sectors may benefit from investing in vans:

  • Shipping: Commercial vans are designed for transporting large or small goods.
  • Private transport: Vans can easily be fitted out to seat a large number of passengers, support wheelchair accessibility and/or medical equipment. This makes them perfect for use in aged care facilities, tour providers or private shuttles.
  • Catering: Whether transporting prepared food, crockery or cooking appliances, caterers require the space of a van on a day-to-day basis.
  • Trades: Maintenance, locksmiths and construction companies are just some of the many trades that can benefit from a van. Fitted out with cabinetry, vans can be packed with all the tools and supplies any tradesperson needs to handle most jobs.

Meanwhile, sales people or merchandisers are less likely to require the body size of a full van. In these cases, form takes priority over function. While some boot space may be needed to move samples or stock, the comfort of clients or public image of your company brand will be more important.

Company fleets represent your brand on the road - what face will you choose?
Company fleets represent your brand on the road – what face will you choose?

2. How much will your vehicles cost to run?

The cost of a company car goes beyond the sticker price. While your vehicles are on the road for business purposes, you'll be footing the bill for fuel. So, it's important to think about the fuel efficiency and type of fuel your cars will run on.

For vehicles that will be frequently used, such as delivery vans, or often travelling long distances such as cars for regional sales managers, fuel efficiency will be vital. The type of fuel may also be a consideration if the public image of your company is a key concern. Opting for non-diesel vehicles is a start, however hybrid or electric vehicles, where available, can support a clean, green image.

3. How safe do you need your vehicles to be?

As an employer and vehicle provider, you have a great duty of care to ensure your employees are safe on the road. Insurance is an important and necessary measure to protect your vehicles and provide for any employees in the case of an accident, but you should also think about equipping your company cars with additional features that reduce the risk and potential impact of any incident.

Desirable safety features to consider for commercial vehicles include:

  • Airbags.
  • Automated Emergency Braking (AEB) systems.
  • Reversing cameras.
  • Front and rear parking sensors and collision mitigation.
  • Lane departure warnings.
  • Automatic headlights.

In the realm of light commercial vans, the Peugeot Expert 2019 is the leading option in Australia for safety. Possessing all the above features and more, the Peugeot Expert 2019 is poised to change the base expectations of commercial fleet managers. Contact Peter Warren Peugeot in Warwick Farm today about adding the Expert 2019 to your fleet.

4. Will you buy new or used?

In most cases, businesses will prefer to buy new vehicles – besides having a longer life ahead of them and having a clear history, dealerships are happy to provide fleet discounts at their own discretion. On top of this, the National Fleet Discount means buyers can enjoy additional savings if they have a large total fleet size (often over 50 cars).

That said, used cars may represent the right opportunity for small business owners. If you're looking to provide one or two vehicles for your staff, consider if pre-owned cars would be suitable for your needs. While you won't enjoy a fleet discount, the sticker price of a used car is typically lower already. Note that it's not as easy to find matching used cars, so it's likely your small fleet won't appear quite as cohesive.

Maintenance is also an important factor in this decision. While new vehicles will start from ground zero, buying used means your fleet will have much more varied maintenance needs. While one car may have not been around the clock yet, another bought at the same time might have spent considerably longer on the road and therefore need more upkeep.

Equipping your organisation with a fleet of vehicles perfectly suited to your financial, operational and duty of care needs is simple with the trusted car dealers at Peter Warren. Drop by your nearest dealership today to discuss your commercial fleet needs.