Car Owners Looking for Longevity in Recession

Jul 21, 2009
The harsh economic climate has hit the auto industry hard with sales drastically down, and it seems that consumers aren’t helping.

A recent study conducted by AutoPacific found that 72 percent of the general public plans not to buy a new car in the next year, and 59 percent of new car buyers intended to keep their car for at least four years.  Last year, that number was 45 percent.

So what does this mean for the commercial fleet?  A fleet owner may want to jump at the chance to haggle with desperate automotive sellers for a good price on new fleet vehicles.  But unless keeping up with new vehicle trends is of great importance to your fleet, the most affordable way to keep your fleet in top condition is to follow a strict maintenance routine.  Regular maintenance can double the useful life of your vehicles and keep them from suffering costly breakdowns and spending time in repair shops.  Even something as simple as making sure tire pressure or oil and coolant levels are correct can extend the life of your vehicles.  The less money you spend replacing your fleet vehicles prematurely, the more money you will have to invest in your business.

With credit becoming harder to come by every day, weathering the economic storm with your current vehicles is a smart choice.  However, if you do wish to replace some of your fleet, you can make it more economically viable by investing in more fuel efficient cars: lighter models, vehicles with smaller engine sizes, and hybrids. This will save you money over time in fuel costs and even help the environment!

Whether you decide to keep your current vehicles or replace them, remember that the most important thing is for your fleet to remain efficient and on the road, doing their job and making you money.  For more information on keeping your fleet as efficient as possible, check out FleetCards USA’s tips for improving fuel efficiency.

Photo courtesy of Beth and Christian under the Creative Commons License