Steve Weston, general manager, Manheim Inspection Services
Vehicle damage, for so long a cost burden for the fleet industry, is now under control –or is it?
The primary goal of fleets should be to maximise return on their stock value against forecast residuals and reduce the amount of time that asset remains on their books at the end of its life.
Therefore they should work with their remarketing partner to determine whether it is appropriate to put a vehicle through a repair process or put it directly into auction.
Although many fleet managers are already taking advantage of off-site inspection services that inspect to BVRLA-approved standards, usually on an ‘inspect and collect’ basis, there are still many that don’t.
Inspectors will record and note any damage, missing keys, V5s or other documentation and then, depending on the fleet operator’s requirements, can present the driver or business with an invoice to recoup the value of repair costs, arrange for the vehicle to be delivered to an approved repairer or pass it straight through to a remarketing channel.
Opinion about car damage varies according to a number of factors; what type of buyer you are, market conditions and vehicle grade.
Most used car retailers prefer to bid for a car that is ‘ready to retail’ to enable them to maximise their ROI and car supermarket buyers work on a business model of high volume and quick turnaround.
Spending time repairing stock simply isn’t an option for them.
The growing threat of stock shortages means high-quality vehicles will be in shorter supply so more buyers will be looking at purchasing older, higher-mileage stock but will not want to spend the time and money on repairs.
An industry-wide robust inspection and repair process will maximise returns on stock values against forecast residuals and will ensure fleets can satisfy this demand.