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Download the Fleet Guide (PDF)

For rnore inforrnation, contact your ARI representative or Brian Matuszewski, ARI Manager of Sustainable Strategies at: SustainableWorks@arifleet.com

BACKGROUND

With vehicle fleets being a highly visible source of greenhouse gases, fleet operators are feeling increasing pressure from companies, customers and government to configure smarter, cleaner transportation solutions. With advancements in vehicle technology, communication systems and management programs, fleet operators have more opportunities than ever before to optimize fleet performance, reduce emissions, and improve their bottom line. Choosing the right technologies and deploying them in a strategic way will guarantee the road to delivering best-in-class results.

THE PURPOSE OF THIS GUIDE IS TO:
  • Provide fleet operators with a methodology designed to configure clean, efficient & cost-effective fleet solutions.
  • Provide an overview of the multitude of options available to achieve this mission.
  • Help fleet managers determine the optimal path to making a sustainable solution successfully “work”.

THE BENEFIT OF SUSTAINABLE FLEETS

BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT
For many organizations, operating a fleet is the single largest contributor to a carbon footprint. Reducing overall fuel consumption and utilizing cleaner fuel alternatives can signifi cantly improve the environmental impact of a fleet.

BETTER FOR THE DRIVERS
Drivers of more environmentally-friendly vehicle fleets benefi t from increased safety, reduction in vehicle noise, fewer odors, improved climate control, and less inhalation of toxic fumes that are typically emitted from conventionally-fueled vehicles. In some locations, drivers also have access to HOV lanes, boosting driver productivity.

BETTER FOR THE BOTTOM-LINE
When rightly-configured, operating a sustainable fleet is better for the bottom line, often producing cost savings in the areas of maintenance and fueling expenses, as well as regulatory compliance.

Step 1:
Develop a Strategic Plan
  • • Capture Data
  • • Define Objectives
  • • Prioritize Efforts
Step 2:
OPTIMIZE FLEET UTILIZATION
  • • Identify Vehicle Requirements
  • • Use Telematics
  • • Evaluate Possibility for
    Vehicle Pooling & Sharing
Step 3:
SELECT THE BEST VEHICLE FOR THE JOB
  • • Fuel-Efficient Vehicles
  • • Optimal Configuration
  • • Clean Technology Vehicles
Step 4:
ENSURE PROPER VEHICLE MAINTENANCE
  • • Vehicle Requirements
  • • Technician Training
  • • Geographic Coverage
Step 5:
MODIFY DRIVER BEHAVIOR
  • • Fuel Reduction Technologies
  • • Driver Training
  • • Telematics

STEP 1
DEVELOP A STRATEGIC PLAN

CAPTURE YOUR DATADEFINE YOUR FLEET POLICY & OBJECTIVES

The road to configuring a best-in-class vehicle fleet begins with establishing a baseline to see where you stand. Data is the most powerful tool fleet managers have to help develop and implement a sustainable fleet strategy. Meaningful data can guide you toward the most effective solution, help establish goals, and recognize when it is the best time to replace your vehicles.

STEP 1
DEVELOP A STRATEGIC PLAN

DEFINE YOUR FLEET POLICY & OBJECTIVESPRIORITIZE YOUR EFFORTS
  • ____ % IMPROVEMENT IN FUEL ECONOMY BY 20_ _
  • ____ % REDUCTION IN ANNUAL FUEL COSTS
  • ____ % REDUCTION IN FLEET CO2 EMISSIONS BY 20_ _
  • ____ % INCREASE IN NUMBER OF CLEAN TECHNOLOGY VEHICLES
  • ____ ROI DEMONSTRATED WITHIN _ _ YEAR TIME FRAME

Help guide continual improvement in the fleet’s operations by determining your fleet’s specific objectives and by developing realistic, measurable target goals. Consider incorporating these objectives in your fleet policy documentation. A vehicle policy will provide specific guidelines for the management and utilization of vehicles and other mobile assets. Vehicle policies are designed to facilitate and encourage accountability, monitor usage and costs, provide internal control, and serve as a management tool for better decision-making.

STEP 1
DEVELOP A STRATEGIC PLAN

PRIORITIZE YOUR EFFORTS

Prioritize your efforts strategically. For instance, it saves more emissions and fuel expenses to improve a vehicle from 12 to 18 MPG than it does to go from 36 to 44 MPG. Identify the greatest opportunity in your fleet for reducing tailpipe emissions. If the objective is to reduce overall emissions, prioritize your efforts accordingly.

STEP 2
OPTIMIZE FLEET UTILIZATION

IDENTIFY VEHICLE REQUIREMENTSUSE TELEMATICS

Creating an inventory of each vehicle’s unique mission, job requirements, and operating requirements is an important step in determining if you are using the best vehicle for that application and whether or not you are optimizing the size and composition of the fleet. Some factors you may want to take note of, include:

  • VEHICLE JOB DUTY
  • VEHICLE OVERNIGHT LOCATION
  • VEHICLE GEOGRAPHIC FOOTPRINT
  • VEHICLE CARGO SPACE REQUIREMENTS
  • VEHICLE DISTANCE RANGE REQUIREMENTS
  • VEHICLE PAYLOAD REQUIREMENTS

STEP 2
OPTIMIZE FLEET UTILIZATION

USE TELEMATICSEVALUATE POSSIBILITY FOR VEHICLE POOLING & SHARING

Get instant tracking and extensive analytic capabilities at your fingertips with vehicle telematics technology. Vehicle telematics technology records and transmits data about a vehicle, equipment, or the operator and can help uncover efficiency gaps and problem areas in order to maximize the utility of the entire fleet. More specifically, it uses global positioning systems (GPS), on-board computers, and cellular or wireless telecommunications systems to capture and relay data on a wide range of parameters, including vehicle location, engine diagnostics, and vehicle operation. Such information can provide you with valuable information to help decrease your vehicle downtime and extend the fleet’s longevity.

STEP 2
OPTIMIZE FLEET UTILIZATION

EVALUATE POSSIBILITY FOR VEHICLE POOLING & SHARING


Fleet inventories often expand over time to include vehicles that are highly specialized, rarely used, or unsuitable for current applications. By optimizing fleet size and composition, you can not only reduce costs associated with fuel purchases, but also other costs such as maintenance, insurance, and registration. Configuring an optimally-utilized fleet prevents unnecessary financial costs and reduces the fleet’s environmental impact.

STEP 3
SELECT THE BEST VEHICLE FOR THE JOB

LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURECONFIGURE A FUEL-EFFICIENT SELECTOR

The acquisition cost of certain vehicle technologies may often be higher than that of conventionally-fueled vehicles. Nevertheless, it is important to note that, when used in the right application, clean technology vehicles can often reduce a fleet’s total cost of ownership (TCO) through fuel and maintenance savings. When evaluating the acquisition of these vehicles it is critical to understand the impacts that vehicle selection will have on your fleet’s operations, cradle-to-grave. Taking this full life cycle approach will allow you to accurately quantify the TCO implications.

STEP 3
SELECT THE BEST VEHICLE FOR THE JOB

CONFIGURE A FUEL-EFFICIENT SELECTORKNOW YOUR VEHICLE AVAILABILITY LANDSCAPE

Fuel is typically the top expense for vehicle fleets. Selecting vehicles with improved fuel efficiency performance can save you money on fuel expenses while simultaneously reduce your tailpipe emissions. In addition to selecting vehicles with the highest fuel economy rating (while ensuring the intended job function is fulfilled), you can further ensure your vehicle’s selector is maximizing fuel efficiency by doing the following:

  • USE AERODYNAMIC DRAG REDUCTION DEVICES
  • AVOID ANY EXCESS CARGO WEIGHT
  • AVOID UNNECESSARY CARGO RACKS ON TOP OF YOUR VEHICLE
  • USE A 2-WHEEL DRIVE INSTEAD OF A 4-WHEEL DRIVE VEHICLE
  • USE VEHICLES WITH LOWER NUMBER OF ENGINE CYLINDERS

STEP 3
SELECT THE BEST VEHICLE FOR THE JOB

KNOW YOUR VEHICLE AVAILABILITY LANDSCAPEGEO-SPATIALLY ANALYZE YOUR FLEET

Selecting the right vehicles for each job is one of the most important steps you can take in configuring a more sustainable fleet solution. And successfully incorporating clean technology vehicles in a fleet is no easy task. When determining the right selection of vehicles, the goal should be to drive down fuel and maintenance costs while increasing residual values. Fortunately, a variety of vehicle technology options exist for fleet operators to choose from—each with an ability to improve your TCO and enhance the environmental performance of a fleet when operated under the right applications.

STEP 3
SELECT THE BEST VEHICLE FOR THE JOB

GEO-SPATIALLY ANALYZE YOUR FLEETKNOW YOUR FUEL COSTS

Analyzing your fleet through geographic information system platforms is a powerful way to uncover prime candidates for clean technology vehicles in your fleet. By understanding where fueling infrastructure and vehicle maintenance support is in relation to your vehicles, you can strategically expand your clean vehicle technology deployment.

STEP 3
SELECT THE BEST VEHICLE FOR THE JOB

KNOW YOUR FUEL COSTSLEVERAGE INCENTIVES IN YOUR AREA

Fuel prices and energy densities vary by fuel type. To understand these differences in an “apples to apples” way, it is important to compare potential fuel expenses on an energy-equivalent basis. One way to do this is through the measurement called gasoline gallon equivalent (GGE), the amount of alternative fuel it takes to equal the energy content of one liquid gallon of gasoline.

STEP 3
SELECT THE BEST VEHICLE FOR THE JOB

LEVERAGE INCENTIVES IN YOUR AREA VEHICLE TECHNOLOGY

Many types of incentives exist for fleets who wish to adopt clean technology vehicles. To help pay the premium price for certain clean technology vehicles, you can leverage the vouchers and tax incentives available in your region by applying early. Many locations with HOV (High occupancy vehicle) lanes accept drivers of clean technology vehicles, saving drivers time on the road and boosting their productivity.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT VEHICLES

Click to learn more about Vehicle Technology, Fueling and CO2 Emissions for each vehicle.

STEP 4
ENSURE PROPER VEHICLE MAINTENANCE

KNOW YOUR MAINTENANCE REQUIREMENTSIDENTIFY WHERE YOU NEED MAINTENANCE SUPPORT

Keeping your vehicles on a Preventative Maintenance (PM) schedule is one of the simplest and most effective ways to ensure a fuel-efficient and sustainable operation. Each vehicle technology type has unique maintenance requirements that need to be fulfilled to ensure the vehicle is operating properly. OEMs fully back the clean technology vehicles they produce with standard warranties, adequate parts inventory, and trained technicians. To the right is an overview of some of the unique maintenance differences, organized by clean technology vehicle type.

  • Electric-drive
  • PROPANE
  • CNG
  • E85

  • ELECTRIC DRIVE

    Electric-drive vehicles typically require less maintenance than conventional gasoline vehicles, as a result of less brake wear and fewer moving parts. Because the advanced batteries used in these vehicles have a limited number of charging cycles, it is important to research battery life and warranties before moving forward with a decision to add these vehicles to your fleet.


    PROPANE

    Some states require periodic certification of the tank or filling systems. Propane’s high octane rating and low carbon and oil contamination characteristics can result in prolonged engine life, when compared to that of gasoline engines.


    CNG

    Most states require a licensed technician to work on CNG vehicle systems. The most important added maintenance requirement for CNG vehicles is an inspection to be performed regularly or after accidents or suspected damage and to replace tanks when they reach the end of their useful life.


    E85

    Fuel systems and engines that have not been designed or modified to use E85 may experience increased wear and may fail prematurely. Some OEMS have no special maintenance requirements for their E85 ethanol flex-fuel vehicles, but other manufacturers may require use of specific engine lubricants. If fueling with E85, share this information with your dealer or parts supplier when ordering replacement parts.

STEP 4
ENSURE PROPER VEHICLE MAINTENANCE

IDENTIFY WHERE YOU
NEED MAINTENANCE SUPPORT
DETERMINE HOW YOU WILL GET THE MAINTENANCE SUPPORT

Because of the limited number of clean technology vehicles on the road, there are limited technicians certified to work on these vehicles and limited maintenance facilities to support them. Locations with a mature network of alternative fueling infrastructure are typically supported by a relatively strong maintenance support network.

STEP 4
ENSURE PROPER VEHICLE MAINTENANCE

DETERMINE HOW YOU WILL GET THE MAINTENANCE SUPPORT

A growing number of training programs are available for mechanics to get the knowledge they need to properly service clean technology vehicles. For clean technology vehicles approved by major OEMs, OEM dealerships can typically get the training and vehicle parts they need relatively quickly.

STEP 5
MODIFY DRIVER BEHAVIOR

ENGAGE YOUR DRIVERSEXPLORE USING VARIOUS FUEL REDUCTION TECHNOLOGIES

Keeping drivers informed of and actively engaged with the fleet’s sustainability efforts are vital to ensuring the fleet is operating in the most efficient manner. Today’s technology can help you find, monitor and deal with lead-footed drivers. Some ways to manage or encourage desired driver behavior, include:

  • DEVELOP AN EFFECTIVE DRIVER POLICY ADDRESSING FUEL EFFICIENCY AND ALTERNATIVE FUEL USE
  • COMMUNICATE AND PROPERLY TRAIN DRIVERS ON FUEL SAVINGS AND MAINTENANCE TIPS AND POLICY ADHERENCE
  • LEVERAGE DATA FROM FUEL CARDS AND TELEMATICS TO REWARD AND INCENTIVIZE FUEL-EFFICIENT DRIVING

STEP 5
MODIFY DRIVER BEHAVIOR

EXPLORE USING VARIOUS FUEL REDUCTION TECHNOLOGIESIMPROVE YOUR PERFORMANCE

A number of technologies are available for fleet operators to reduce vehicle idling and fuel consumption without compromising driver comfort or vehicle equipment operations. Incorporating fuel reduction technologies into vehicles that consume a lot of fuel while idling typically provides a favorable return on investment.

Telematics is another technology that can prevent increased wear-and-tear on your vehicles by monitoring poor driving habits which infl ate your operating costs. How much information you want to collect will depend on how much you want to spend for the telematics system. Options range from minimal plug-in devices to complex systems that are hardwired in the vehicle.

STEP 5
MODIFY DRIVER BEHAVIOR

IMPROVE YOUR PERFORMANCE

Successfully modifying driver behavior can deliver substantial results that reduce expenses and enhance the environmental performance amongst the fleet.

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