Automotive Fleet

NOV 2013

Magazine for the car and truck fleet and leasing industry

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Stable fuel prices and maintenance costs, combined with a decrease in total fuel consumption due to increased use of more fuel-effcient vehicles, resulted in less volatility in feet operations during the 12 months ending August 2013. BY MIKE ANTICH AND LAUREN FLETCHER O perating costs for fuel, replacement tires, maintenance/repairs, and preventive maintenance (PM) oil drains were fat in the 12 months ending August 2013 compared to the prior 12 months. Tese fndings and others are revealed in Automotive Fleet's 22nd annual operating cost survey, based on data provided by seven survey partners: AT A GLANCE Gasoline and diesel costs for commercial feets were stable in 2013 and are forecast to remain so throughout the 2014 calendar-year. ● After many years of ongoing price increases, tire costs were stable in 2013. ● Maintenance costs have decreased across the board with the primary factor being increased overall vehicle quality. ● The increased use of synthetic oil, although more expensive, has extended the interval between oil drains. ● 18 AUTOMOTIVE FLEET I NOVEMBER 2013 ARI. Donlen. ● Emkay, Inc. ● GE Capital Fleet Services. ● LeasePlan USA. ● PHH Arval. ● Wheels Inc. Tis year's survey is based on analysis of actual operating costs incurred by 775,556 vehicles operated by commercial feets, which are managed by these seven feet management companies. ● ● Fuel Price Trends Te most notable occurrence was that gasoline and diesel costs for commercial feets were stable compared to 2012. "From a pricing standpoint, the market has remained relatively fat through most of the year, but we continue to see feets heighten their focus on overall cost reduction strategies. Fleets are becoming increasingly sensitive to fuel costs and are initiating more fuel-saving programs this year over last," said Tony Piscopo, director feet management services for ARI. Although pricing volatility has moderated, fuel continues to represent feets' PISCOPO largest operating expense. "Fuel continues to be the No. 1 feet spend. As new engines and new transmissions become available, feets are evaluating these and their impact on fuel costs," said John Bauer, manager of feet analytics for Wheels Inc. Te forecast for fuel prices is to remain stable throughout the 2014 calendar-year. "Afer years of increasing fuel prices, gasoline prices moderated a bit in 2013, while diesel prices held relatively steady. However, both are expected to decline marginally in 2014, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Seeing fuel spend decline slightly afer years of increases

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