A fresh approach to the corporate car market has paved the way for Suzuki to more than triple its fleet sector sales in two years.
Annual registrations in the segment have grown from 1,000 to 3,500 thanks to a focus on local business users, Motability and contract hire and leasing, claims sales and marketing director Dale Wyatt.
"The fleet sector has played an increasingly important role as our total volume has gone from 20,000 in 2012 to 33,000 to make us Britain’s fastest-growing franchise.
"My intention is for this to continue. We still have a big retail bias, but we are now making considerable progress in an area of business that is driven by customer demand, rather than enforced as a means of moving volume. We’re delighted that leasing companies are enthusiastic about our new S-Cross because their customers are now asking them about the car," he said.
Introduced seven months ago, the SUV crossover model is expected to achieve 5,000 registrations this year.
"40% will go to fleet – and that’s a significant achievement for a brand that previously achieved a fleet mix of just five per cent across its whole model range," he told Fleet News.
The surge of interest is expected to result in fleet registrations accounting for 15% of the 40,000 total volume the company aims to achieve in 2016.
"The S-Cross is generating a step-change in the way we go forward. It was the subject of our first fleet launch, which was a great success and resulted in residuals that allow us to offer really strong leasing and contract hire terms.
"We will repeat the process with our next fleet product, the all-new B-segment SUV that will arrive early next year and will allow us to rival the Nissan Juke with a 1.6-litre diesel car that has strong visual attraction, ruggedness, features our all-grip technology and is really very sporty to drive. In addition, it will be particularly suitable for customisation.
"This summer, we’ll introduce minor revisions to the Swift to help us take our supermini sales from 10,000 to 15,000 per year as we promote it in the public sector and with local business users.
"Suzuki is now more fleet aware – our 144 dealers are more digitally competent and have completed a training programme to help them understand fleet legislation, the law and the complexities of contract hire and leasing. The future looks exciting," he said.