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BVRLA report hails rental and leasing opportunities

Date: 06 December 2018   |   Author: Sean Keywood

The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA) says its members are ready to seize the initiative in taking on challenges facing the industry.

The organisation's Industry Outlook 2019 Report states that while the next 12 months will be a challenging period, its members are laying the groundwork for a productive and secure long-term future, rather than waiting for an economic upturn or government support. 

Chief executive Gerry Keaney said: "The vehicle rental and leasing industry continues to see opportunities everywhere.

"It is perfectly placed to deliver the revolution in autonomous, connected and electric mobility and is already benefitting from growing demand for vehicle usership rather than ownership. 

"Members are increasingly going direct, whether it is engaging with local transport policymakers, remarketing their own vehicles or talking directly with a new generation of personal and SME customers."

Keaney said that while BVRLA members may not be able to fulfil every mobility services need right now, they are keeping a very open mind about what is possible and how to spot new ways of adding value.

He added: "Whether it is electric vehicles, prognostics data, last mile logistics or car subscriptions, members are increasingly willing to explore new business models, technology platforms and partnerships."

The report sets out a collective industry view on some key areas.

On the subject of the road to zero, it says the industry's opinion is united on seeing an electric future, which is a case of not 'if', but 'how' and 'when'. 

It says electric vehicles, Brexit, diesel demonisation and WLTP are all contributing to an uncertain early 2019 in the used car market - but that any price changes should be small. 

The BVRLA says that data will become an increasing issue for policymakers, and that prognostics is set to become the new must-have fleet management service. 

On the subject of Brexit, it says members are focusing on preparing for unexpected outcomes, rather than just considering the various 'deal or no deal' scenarios.

It says it remains to be seen how successful car subscriptions will turn out to be, but its members are embracing digital technology to help communicate with SME clients. 

It also says members are facing increased vehicle repair costs, despite falling numbers of accidents. This is because new materials, sensors and electric powertrains are having an impact on repairability.