Dacia admits UK fleet rethink
05 March 2013
Renault's budget brand Dacia has changed its attitude towards UK fleet business after initially saying it was an area of the market it didn't expect to operate in to any serious level.
"In all honesty, our thinking has evolved because our experience from Europe said Dacia was more retail," Dacia product manager Adam Wood told BusinessCar. "The simple recipe of incredible value for money, and space for the money, across low CO2 and P11D - so low BIK - is proving a very attractive proposition to a wide variety of fleets as much as retail.
"The task now is to say to fleet: Here's our recipe and simple proposition," Wood continued, explaining the business model is to set no sales targets or bonuses for the dealer network, meaning their only revenue on a vehicle is the margin they make or extras they sell on it. "We do have a list price that undercuts like-for-like competition by thousands of pounds, and that value for money is attractive to retail and fleet," he said. "There is no [financial] support from Dacia to fleet sales but we've got competitive product for the money. It's very clear for everyone."
Wood claimed the leasing industry has been "very enthusiastic" about the brand, and said it is already starting to appear on lease choice lists. Business car interest is coming from the emergency services for the Duster, particularly the 4x4 version among fleets that need go-anywhere ability. The Sandero supermini is expected to find favour in the public sector.
"Our first demonstrators are available in the UK now and we've started providing them to many fleet companies so we'll continue to see how that evolves," said Wood. "The broad appeal of a clear and simple business model will appeal to everyone from user-choosers to public sector to major fleets. It's a business model and product proposition that will have very wide appeal."
Renault's existing fleet sales team have taken on responsibility for Dacia in addition to their current role.
Dacia launched with the Sandero supermini and Duster SUV, with a Sandero Stepway crossover following. The new Logan small estate car (pictured), revealed this week, will become the fourth model in the line-up when it goes on sale this autumn. The Logan is expected to be priced from less than £8000 and is based on the same platform as the Sandero.