Fleet News

Ford targets Volkswagen as upper medium scramble reaches its peak

A FLEET battle royal is building between Ford and Volkswagen as the two manufacturers attempt to woo fleet chiefs with their new Mondeo and Passat models. Both manufacturers invited hundreds of fleet managers to the British International Motor Show - many to view the two new cars for the first time - and Ford produced three-year/60,000-pence per mile figures which show operating savings of more than £2,000 on some Mondeo models compared with the Passat.

While Ford has shown its hand with new Mondeo, Volkswagen has yet to reveal UK specification, prices and operating costs for its new Passat. That data is expected to be announced next month ahead of the dealers taking delivery of vehicles in January.

In the build-up to the launch of the new Mondeo, Ford has targeted Volkswagen and virtually ignored new rival models in the Renault Laguna and Citroen C5, which are also due to go on sale in the near future.

Operating cost figures produced by Emmox and published by Ford reveal that fleets can save £2,072 over three years/60,000 miles with the £14,390 Mondeo 1.8 LX compared with the £15,925 Passat 1.8 S 20v.

Ford fleet marketing manager John Rogers said: 'Ford set out to build low cost of ownership into the new Mondeo. We want the new Mondeo to be the market leader in terms of ownership costs. When these Emmox figures are combined with the physical ability of the vehicle it is a powerful proposition.

'New Mondeo must appeal to user-choosers in terms of a driving proposition and fleet managers in terms of ownership costs and that is the balance the designers have achieved.'

Meanwhile, Volkswagen head of fleet Vince Kinner has promised indicative pricing and specification shortly with both saloon and estate models going on sale in the new year.

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