Spotlight On: Commercial Vehicles

Spotlight On: Commercial Vehicles

Publish date: 21/07/2020

FMG continues to invest in its core accident management proposition, supporting the evolving requirements of clients and the UK vehicle parc, which continues to evolve in size, scale and composition. In April the SMMT announced the UK vehicle parc had exceeded 40 million vehicles for the first time. More than 35 million cars and 5 million commercial vehicles were in use in the UK in 2019, representing a 1% year-on-year increase.

Commercial vehicles saw a significant increase, with light commercial vehicles seeing the largest percentage growth, rising 2.7% on the previous year to circa 4.5 million vehicles. This is a surge of over 25% in the last decade. Heavy goods vehicles grew by 0.4% to 607K – the largest number since 1990. Many of these vehicles are supporting the change in consumer behaviour with the increase in ‘just in time’, online shopping and home deliveries.

Today, FMG manage a staggering 140,000 commercial vehicles on behalf of over 500 clients. We repair 20,000 commercial vehicles each year through our dedicated network. We are experienced in the repair of light commercial vehicles, heavy good vehicles and specialist equipment. We understand the requirements of a working fleet are different to that of a car fleet and we have proven capability and credibility in the market.

We continue to further strengthen the commercial vehicle proposition, with a keen focus on minimising vehicle downtime and mitigating incidents for our client base. Over the past six months we have been busy piloting new repair solutions that will ensure roadworthy vehicles are kept mobile and a greater choice of repair methodology.

During the last 12 months, we asked our mobile repair partner to commission a specialist repair rig for LCVs. This has now been piloted with a wider roll-out plan in place throughout 2020. FMG specified the size of the rig, ensuring high-roof, long wheel-based transits can be accommodated. The design will also allow part coverage for larger HGVs depending on the area of damage.

During the pilot the rig was set up at a regional depot to ensure the one-day repair solution was maximised. During this period, 40% of the repairs utilised the rig, minimising downtime and replacement vehicle costs. We are looking forward to scaling the solution over the next few months, with the addition of more bespoke rigs to support the wider client base.

Additionally, we have further enhanced our parts provision to offer greater flexibility and choice to support downtime management. The provision of green and non-oem parts have been piloted, where appropriate, and the results have been positive. In terms of green parts, we have focused on bolt-on bumpers, panels and lights, but not included structural, mechanical or safety parts.

The results show 30% of repairs across the pilot fleets utilised a green part, delivering an average cost saving of £94.00 per repair, whilst also improving cycle time and mitigating associated costs, such as replacement vehicle hire. This service will be rolled out to the wider client base later in the year.

We are also looking to develop the service provision for fast-fit repairs; with parts procured via FMG liaising between the driver and their nearest fast-fit centre to coordinate the repair. Currently, repairs are predominantly wing-mirror related, with the capability to include bulb-cluster changes and number plate replacements. Additional services to include mobile solutions are presently under review.

In recent weeks, our team of solution analysts have developed a generic downtime management API that contains the vehicle life cycle data that can be consumed into client back office systems. The API creates greater transparency to ensure vehicle progress is understood by all parties.

We are looking forward to sharing more of our exciting commercial vehicle plans over the new few months.