• May 15th 2011 at 1:02PM
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Corporate fleet managers rated volatile fuel prices as their top concern for 2011, according to a survey conducted by General Electric Capital Fleet Services. The survey of 105 fleet managers found that driver safety and overall cost savings do matter. However, both are considered to be less of a concern than unstable fuel prices.

GE's survey shows that 29 percent of fleet managers use some sort of analytics to improve operational efficiency and reduce overall fuel consumption. Twenty seven percent of those surveyed claim that their analytical systems have slashed costs. However, with volatile fuel prices as a driving force, 28 percent of the surveyed fleet managers claim to have committed to purchasing electric vehicles to incorporate into their fleets within the next 12 months. Of course, some companies, including UPS and FedEx, already have numerous battery-powered vehicles within their massive fleets.

[Source: General Electric Capital Fleet Services]
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Volatile Fuel Prices Are Top Fleet Manager Concern

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn.--09 May 2011-- Corporate fleet managers rate higher and more volatile fuel prices as their top concern in 2011, according to a recent survey conducted by GE Capital Fleet Services. More than a quarter of respondents (29 percent) said the recent spike in fuel prices has made this issue their top concern, up from 12 percent a year ago.

The survey of 105 fleet managers, conducted recently at the 2011 NAFA Institute & Expo in Charlotte, found that driver safety and cost savings were also top areas of concern. Concern for driver safety increased in 2011 to 28 percent from 21 percent in 2010, while cost savings fell as a priority but remained important at 23 percent, down from 36 percent in 2010.

Moreover, cost savings are now a bigger focus for executive management according to fleet managers. Sixty-four percent of those surveyed indicated that executive management's main focus for fleets is cost savings, up from 48 percent in 2010.

"Volatile fuel prices are an overriding concern today for corporate fleet managers, given the current environment," said Clarence Nunn, CEO of GE Capital Fleet Services. "We are seeing a corresponding increase in interest from our fleet customers for solutions in fuel, telematics and maintenance programs that will help them combat rising fuel costs and improve operational efficiency."

Other key findings from the survey include:

* Analytics: 29 percent of fleet managers use fleet analytics to improve operational efficiency and 27 percent noted that analytics helped them achieve cost savings
* Lease accounting: Between a third and half of fleet managers (40 percent) feel they don't have a good enough grasp of how pending changes to lease accounting rules (FASB) will affect fleet leasing
* Electric Vehicles: 28 percent said they plan to incorporate electric vehicles into their fleets within the next 12 months

For more information about GE Capital, Fleet Services, visit: www.gefleet.com.

About GE Capital, Fleet Services

GE Capital, Fleet Services, based in Eden Prairie, Minn., is a global fleet management company with operations in the United States, Canada, Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. Visit the Web site at gefleet.com follow the company's eco news and updates via Twitter (@GEFleetSvcs)

GE Capital offers consumers and businesses around the globe an array of financial products and services. For more information, visit gecapital.com or follow company news via Twitter (@GECapital). GE (NYSE: GE) is an advanced technology, services and finance company taking on the world's toughest challenges. For more information, visit ge.com.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 7 Months Ago
      Electric delivery vehicles are past the tipping point. In the areas that they are currently servicing you can now lease a vehicle with a maintenance contract and save money from say one against a diesel. Here is an audio from Smith (1 hour) http://www.zshare.net/audio/8530124592d04630/ And here is one in use by Frito-Lay: http://blogs.edmunds.com/greencaradvisor/2011/03/doing-delivery-rounds-in-an-electric-smith-newton.html
        • 7 Months Ago
        David, I have long been a supporter of the EV pioneer Smith and other EV producers of commercial vehicles.(why UK can't retain such enterprises makes me despair, but that's another story). The EV commercial vehicle market is expanding rapidly, and profitably. The next area of expansion will be buses. Converting commercial vehicles fleets to EV is hugely beneficial in terms of the environment and creditability for EV's in general. At the present time the US manufacturer Ford has an advantage with the Transit Range being for many years, worlds most successful light commercial Vehicles. However, the French auto-industry is formidable rival. Oddly, Toyota, with a significant market share of the world Van market and tremendous experience in EV forms of transport, has shown almost no interest in EV commercials. I also note that an ABG article on Bob Lutz, (90% abusive) received nearly 80 posts, but the average for commercial EV's is three posts, if you don't count the intriguing invitation to sample the delights of a young PRC escort/masseuse! (it looks like the west won the cultural revolution!)
      • 7 Months Ago
      Marco - I share your despair that the UK authorities have done little more than talk of wanting EVs - and haven't signed up to buy them, except in tiny trial batches. I am hopeful that Smith will succeed in the US, and that their imminent listing on the Nasdaq stockmarket will be a huge success, bring in vast amounts of investment money to press ahead with their promised expansion. As soon as the proposed ipo is formally announced - any day now - I reckon there will be an explosion of announcements of fleet orders, beyond the impressive ones already signed.
        • 7 Months Ago
        Yes, very sad, and now Modec is in liquidation. The EV London Taxi's have been sold to PRC Geely Motors, Allied are struggling,.... The UK 's glory days as a manufacturing innovator are only remembered by an American, Bill Ford jnr, when he paid tribute to the UK designed Transit.
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      With any luck they may lead the way.