Fleet Mobility Today talks TCO at first FMMC meeting

by Daniel Bland, Fleet Mobility Today July 8, 2024

Fleet Mobility Today (FMT) held its first FMMC (Fleet and Mobility Managers Club) meeting for Brazil in June, kicking off FMTs mission to address challenges in fleet and facilities management and share best practices with experts throughout the Americas.

As FMMC Brazil works in collaboration with FMMC Latin America and FMMC North America, they represent the three pillars aimed at flourishing the advancement of fleet and mobility operations in the 30+ country region.

During the meeting, which revolved around the topic of TCO (total cost of ownership), FMMC members highlighted challenges such as finding reasonably priced vehicles with high safety ratings, managing an electric vehicle (EV) fleet, and determining between leased fleet and a fleet of your own vehicles.

Also discussed was the need for proper data management as well as knowing every aspect of your leasing contracts.

Members found that Latin NCAP is a good way to discover vehicle models with high safety ratings but also mentioned that the number of models being tested is merely a fraction of the total market.

Although automakers could submit more models for testing, many of the FMMC members found that the Brazilian public generally does not prioritize safety all that much. More awareness is needed in the country, they said.

As for electric vehicles (EV), among the challenges are having sufficient EV charging infrastructure available for drivers and finding ways to appropriately manage and reimburse energy usage for business use. One suggestion was to issue individual chargers which can track usage.

Regardless, many at the meeting attendees support the usage of ethanol in their fleets which is another clean option that is highly available in Brazil. The less developed solution of Hydrogen was briefly mentioned as well but this is something that we will debate in more detail in the future.

As for vehicle acquisition, to lease or to buy your own vehicle really depends on the financial situation of your company and the performance of your core business. Basically, leasing does come with costs, but it also provides fiscal benefits, and it is easier to manage. There is more complexity and many management responsibilities to having a fleet of your own vehicles.

Also discussed was the importance of having a robust platform that collects data for strategizing. You need to have the right information at hand and an Excel spreadsheet will not cut it in many cases.  Finally, you must know all aspects of your leasing contracts. You need to be aware of penalties. Read the fine print as this could impact your TCO if not managed properly.

Overall, the meeting was a learning experience for all who participated. Stay tuned for more insights as the FMMC Latin America meeting will take place tomorrow (July 9), followed by FMMC North America in August. We will update you shortly.