Suzuki announces 'fit for fleet' gameplan
22 May 2013
Author: Rachel Burgess
Suzuki has spent the past 12 months making the brand "fit for fleet" according to Dale Wyatt, the firm's sales and marketing director.
As well as appointing its first fleet manager, Andrew Wale, who has previous experience with Nissan and Honda, it has developed its Motability offer from near-zero to 900 vehicles, launched a white label contract hire programme with Lex Autolease, and is building relationships with RV influencers Cap and Glass's.
Wyatt said: "We're looking at targeting fleet opportunities and playing to our strengths by providing a retail-like experiences to fleets. The starting point was with Motability and local businesses."
Wyatt added that is has improved its used car programme to make remarketing more effective and, in turn, help residual values.
The arrival of a Nissan Qashqai-rivalling lower medium crossover in autumn this year is also expected to catapult Suzuki's progress into fleet. With low CO2, high mpg and ample boot space, Wyatt believes the SX4 is exactly what the brand needs to develop business sales.
With predicted CO2 of 110g/km and 125g/km on the diesel and petrol respectively, Wyatt said the car was close to Golf Bluemotion figures, and would offer typical "Suzuki value for money".
He added that the car would be launched with a fleet-specific trim: "We've looked at the market leaders, like Nissan with the N-Tec spec on its Qashqai, which has gone down very well in the fleet market and includes alloys and satnav."
Last year, 12% of the marque's sales were to fleet. The aim is to reach 20% share. Wyatt predicts that 5000 of its total 29,000 units to be sold in 2013 will be corporate business.