The system, Fleet Telematics, costs £499 including fitting the black box, with rates thereafter ranging from £10 to £30 per month per vehicle depending on the level of service and frequency of reporting required.
The unit can be fitted to all Ford vehicles from new, or can be fitted at a dealer retrospectively.
Ford claims reductions on fuel and mileage and improvements to residual values will result in cost cutting of between 7-10%. According to Kathryn Lees, Ford director of telematics: 'Ford Fleet Telematics is a valuable fleet management tool which can play a major role in improving efficiency and reducing operating costs for fleet. The system identifies the strengths and weaknesses of fleet operations and highlights exactly where economies can be made.'
The system uses GPS technology and the internet to give fleet managers instant updates on vehicles, exception reporting, mileages, start and stop times, stolen vehicles tracking, traffic and travel information and zone violation warnings.
However, Ford believes the system's main advantage over retro-fitted rivals is that Fleet Telematics can be fitted to cars before they go on fleet, with all payments incorporated into existing Ford Credit packages, saving time and administration.