Mobile fleet services aren’t new, however, they are growing in popularity as companies aim to cut back on driver downtime. The “repair shops on wheels” also have the potential to lower the total cost of ownership (TCO) and increase the customer service response time.
On-demand vehicle repair and maintenance start-ups continue to crop up in response to an avid demand for mobile fleet solutions. This need has grown so much now that even the traditional fleet providers are ready to innovate in an effort to keep up.
The increasing costs of unscheduled vehicle downtime, falling between the range of $448 and $760 every day, have made mobile fleet companies believe that they can save fleets from spending a huge sum of money by simply disrupting the archaic in-shop preventive maintenance (PM) and repair model.
Mobile Fleet Services Are Here to Reduce Fleet Downtime
Nowadays, there are way too many mobile fleet services. They provide various services such as PM, on-site repair, refueling, and vehicle washing. All of these are services that fleets are now demanding so that they can streamline vehicle care and get their drivers back on the road much quicker than before.
In November 2019, Seattle-based Wrench raised about $20 million in funds to streamline their on-site vehicle maintenance and repair services. Wrench, which was founded in 2017, didn’t take a lot of time to expand its growing market presence; in fact, it acquired Fiix, a mobile vehicle mechanic startup in 2019.
Founded in 2018, RepairSmith, Wrench’s competitor based in LA, also advertises its mobile fleet services including multipoint inspections, PM, and diagnostics. Moreover, the company also offers routine maintenance and repairs on-site for companies.
In early 2019, Cox Automotive also got its hands dirty in the mobile vehicle services market when it launched Pivet, its own network of mobile fleet services. The network offers fueling, cleaning, maintenance, parking, and many more services at both stationary hubs and via mobile providers. Moreover, Cox’s acquired RideKleen, originally a mobile car care company, and announced last year that it will begin offering mobile fleet services throughout the US 24/7.
Filld, Yoshi, spiffy are all companies that are also vying for the top spot when it comes to providing mobile fleet services.
Three companies – Pep Boys, YourMechanic, and Booster Fuels – are targeting the market with reliable and budget-friendly mobile fleet servicing. Let’s take a look at each of their plans:
Brian Kaner, the CEO of Service at Icahn Automotive – the company that acquired the Pep Boys in 2016 and launched its fleet program along with a mobile fleet service program by 2019 – said that the company plans to expand its reach and take it to a national level.
While the more common mobile services include brakes, repairs, batteries, etc., Kaner has seen the value in a wider range of mobile services such as PM and safety inspections. It’s the ideal way to streamline the entire vehicle repair and maintenance procedure. Kaner further elaborated that one needs to look for a provider that can effectively adapt to your business’s specific operational needs and can simplify the whole repair and maintenance cycle for you.
YourMechanic’s president, Anthony Rodio, claimed that the company’s mobile repair services enable fleets to keep their vehicles in transit, uphold safety compliance, and prevent their depreciation. It offers vehicle maintenance and repair services straight on fleet hubs and lots.
The company’s fleet clients usually have maintenance and repair services during off hours and on-site so that there’s no need to take the vehicles out of service. Each mechanic is trained to take care of half a dozen vehicles within the span of a few hours. This saves the company that avails mobile fleet services a lot of time and money.
Rodio also revealed that according to Deloitte’s ‘Future of Mobility Report,’ when combined, the maintenance, repair, and vehicle depreciation costs amount for even more than half of the entire cost of ownership. YourMechanic aims to reduce these costs with scheduled maintenance and mobile fleet service.
Formed in 2015, Booster Fuels offers same-day, on-site fuel delivery to its customers. At present, its signature purple mini-tankers provide gasoline and diesel to over 350 parked fleets every night. James Solada, the director of fleet marketing at Booster, claims that every vehicle that they provide fuel to can potentially save a fleet around 10% of its total operational costs. What’s more is that Booster Refuels have a one fuel bill policy for the entire fleet, which omits the pesky task management requirement of keeping tabs for separate fuel receipts for all vehicles.
According to Booster, its app takes care of the fuel costs, helps increase productivity, and improves fleet maintenance. This ultimately leads to a saving of around $1,500 per vehicle each year. Solada revealed that the response from Booster’s customers has been tremendously positive.
A Budding Industry
Anthony Rodio the CEO of YourMechanic perfectly summed up why the mobile fleet market is blossoming. He was of the opinion that the ability to keep fleet vehicles at their location while performing mobile services such as car washes and fueling is undoubtedly revolutionary. This is because it enables the fleet renter to keep their vehicles in use during precious working hours and saves them from spending money to pay chauffeurs to take their rented vehicles to gas stations, shops, etc. He further elaborated that having the needed vehicles delivered to fleet locations is a huge game-changer as it will positively impact fleet revenue growth and efficiency.
What’s more is that the demand for mobile fleet services will only keep growing. In fact, according to Frost & Sullivan, the number of vehicles sold to the fleet is expected to rise from the current 20% to as high as 40% over the next 20 years as services such as ride-hailing, ride-sharing, and online retail continue to progress.