Leasing: The Ownership Alternative

Fleet leasing allows businesses to focus on their customers, not their trucks.


By leasing trucks, Mims Meat was able to update its fleet immediately without straining the corporate credit line, according to Mims. Buying 16 trucks would have been tough financially, he says.

Leasing allows companies to keep up with the latest technology, which can lead to driver retention.

“One of the reasons we went with Peterbilt and PacLease is because of the very competitive market for truck drivers. The better the piece of equipment you put them in, the easier it is to recruit,” Mims says.

To meet its customers’ need for current equipment, PLM offers a shorter than usual equipment cycle of five years.

“One of the things technology has improved is fuel efficiency,” says Durm. “Current reefers on the market get about .7 gallons per run time hour. A 10 year old trailer gets 1.3 to 1.4 gallons per run time hour. This can amount to savings of thousands in a very short period.”

Another fast-changing technology is trailer temperature monitors and controls.

Ryder System Inc. of Miami, FL, leases both dry and refrigerated vans. Adriano Melluzzo, director of food & beverage sales for fleet management solutions, says that since technology helps their customers adhere to food safety regulations, it’s important to use the latest equipment available.

“We’re starting to see an uptick on the refrigeration side because of the current and pending food safety regulations,” says Melluzzo. “There is a lot of product temperature monitoring that needs to take place in food and grocery when delivering perishable products. In order to meet the government’s and their customers’ requirements, they must have the latest and greatest technology in these trailers.”

To help keep up with the demand for temperature gauging, PLM offers a service called Cold Link. It uses satellite technology to monitor the temperature inside the trailer. If the temperature drops out of range for a certain amount of time, it will notify the user via their cellular device or desktop at the home office. Cold Link also allows the user to change the temperature of the trailer remotely from any computer or device linked to the service.

Fleet leasing is also an excellent way to simplify maintenance.

Maintenance On Demand

Depending on the agreement, many companies offer maintenance programs with their leases. Melluzzo explains how Ryder helps its customers focus on their primary business objective by taking care of maintenance for them.

“At Ryder we’re much more than a truck and a price,” says Melluzzo. “It’s what we offer as a value-add in our leases. We allow our customers to focus on their core business and outsource all the moving parts of maintaining a fleet. Once we come to terms over the financing of the lease itself, we marry our maintenance agreement with the lease.”

Maintenance is performed at a Ryder shop and includes all repairs, parts and labor. It also includes vehicle support services such as substitute vehicles for when a piece of equipment breaks down and road service if a vehicle breaks down on the side of the road.

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