The recession has forced vehicle leasing companies to up their game when it comes to service and maintenance expertise.

According to fleet e-commerce firm Epyx, the move to extended replacement cycles of at least four years as a result of the downturn has prompted leasing companies to develop new SMR buying skills.

Ken Trinder, head of business development at Epyx, said: “When vehicles were run on three year cycles and had three year warranties there was a limited need for SMR expertise. However, because four and five year old vehicles have reached a point where major component failure is likely, the demands on management have increased massively.”

Trinder said leasing companies were now monitoring service and maintenance costs much more closely than before the recession, when they focused on securing large scale supplier deals to concentrate spending power.

“Now, while deals covering prices and rates remain important, micro management of actual costs is where progress is being made,” Trinder said.

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