6 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Vehicle for Your Company

How did you buy your last personal car? Did you buy it off the lot or have it built just for you? What made you decide on the model of vehicle that you selected?

When you are looking to purchase a vehicle for your business, think about all of those things and then throw them out the window!

Buying a car for your company will be a completely different experience than how you personally buy vehicles. Nine times out of ten when you buy a car for yourself, you rely heavily on emotion. If you do this for your business you will end up spending more money than necessary. Instead, focus your decision on six key areas.

1. Fuel Economy

When gas prices skyrocket this is usually the first thing you think about. However, even with gas prices being relatively low, you still need to think about maximizing your fuel economy. Even if your vehicles require the carrying of a lot of equipment, you may be able to find a vehicle with a smaller engine or cargo area that will still satisfy your needs. This means “right-sizing” or finding a vehicle with the best fuel economy that meets your needs.

Fleet Fuel Cards

When you’ve chosen your next company vehicle, you may also want to consider the benefits of a company fuel card. This will increase the awareness and management of fuel usage while reducing fuel costs. 

Ewald’s fleet fuel card program gives you 98% access to gas stations across the US. So you’ll be able to conveniently monitor your company’s fuel usage wherever you go. Contact us with questions about fuel cards or if you’d like to start the program for your company today.

2. Safety

Obviously, you want your employees to remain safe but what steps are you taking to ensure this on the road? Is the vehicle you purchase ensuring their safety? For those in the Midwest, this often means finding a vehicle that can handle the brutal winter roads. This could also mean purchasing some extra safety features that may not come on the showroom floor model.

3. Budget

We often hear from clients that they want to buy the cheapest car they can find to meet their needs. Often people will spend more down the road (pun intended!) because they tried to save money upfront. Also, few fleet managers consider what the resale value of the vehicle they buy will be, but this is direct money in or not in your hands! The key is finding a vehicle that will be the best value in the long run, not the lowest sticker price.

Insurance Costs

A portion of your vehicle insurance costs will depend on the make, age and engine size of the vehicle. Before choosing the type of vehicle you want for your company fleet, you may want to consider how much it’s going to cost to insure one. How you operate your business may also affect your insurance costs. Depending on the size of your fleet and the frequency at which you use your vehicles, your insurance costs may increase.

Implementing a fleet safety program and company car policy can also assist with reducing risk and potential expense from costly accidents and poor driving behavior.

Maintenance and Repair Costs

Before you choose your company vehicle, you’ll want to consider those additional maintenance and repair costs. To keep your employees safe from hazardous conditions on the road, you’ll want to regularly maintain your vehicles. The cost of these services can depend on the make and model of your vehicle. Different vehicles will carry different costs for parts, parts availability and ease of maintenance. 

A great way to keep maintenance costs down is by having expert technicians oversee routine maintenance and unplanned repairs. At Ewald Fleet Solutions, we offer vehicle repair management programs to keep your fleet in the best shape possible. Contact us today to reduce your vehicle maintenance costs.

4. Image

This is where things get fun. What do you want your vehicles to say about your company when your employees pull in to meet a client? Do you want them to say that you are environmentally conscious, a high-end service provider or blue-collar worker? Every vehicle tells a story, so it is important to know what you want that story to be and then figure out what vehicle will tell that story. Whether it is what model of vehicle your employees drive or a high-end graphics package, the look of your vehicle can be very important.

What type of business car do you want and why?

Depending on the type of business you wish to perform you may need a company car that reflects that. If you’re in the food industry you may potentially need a refrigerated truck or van to complete delivery services. Bigger trucks tend to be more useful for transporting bulk materials from production sites to businesses.

Car Models

Each type of vehicle has distinct features that could make it a good or bad choice for your business. You’ll need to identify those strengths and weaknesses and how they relate to your business operations before you pay for the product. Businesses that are centered around travel may want a vehicle with good fuel efficiency and durability. Consider what you need your car to do now and down the line.

5. Environmental Impact 

With the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere being at a record high, companies are being pressured to consider environmental factors in all management decisions. How much you care and want your company to care about the environment may influence your choices in choosing your next car. Fuel choices are something to consider when looking into the impact of a vehicle on the environment. Petrol engine technology has enabled car manufacturers to produce small engines with lower CO2 and higher MPG.

6. Employee-Owned Fleet

While employee-owned vehicles can be a cost-effective solution for transportation, they are much harder to manage. You need to consider the following if you decide to manage an employee-owned fleet:

  • The safety of your employees
  • The maintenance of the vehicles
  • The fuel efficiency of the vehicles
  • How much emissions they produce
  • If the vehicles are correctly taxed and insured

It may be in your best interest to buy a fleet of company vehicles to ease your managing responsibilities.

So, forget everything that you know about buying a vehicle and focus on these six criteria. When you do, you will find a vehicle that is the best value for you today and down the road. Contact Ewald Fleet Solutions for help choosing the best company vehicles for you.