Maintenance contracts are becoming a growing source of revenue for the truck leasing industry, and the industry expects that maintenance may become an even more significant source of revenue for the future.
Peter Vroom, CEO of the Truck Renting & Leasing Assn. (TRALA), told Fleet Owner that the truck leasing industry saw maintenance contract grow 11% last year over 2001 and he thinks maintenance should continue to be a growing source of business over both the near- and long-term.
"Clearly it's an area of increased activity," he said. "Even though much of the used truck glut has been winnowed down, we're seeing two trends that will continue to drive maintenance demand."
The first, Vroom said, is that some fleets are still trying to extend the life of their current equipment rather than buy trucks equipped with new low-emission engines. The other is that fleets buying trucks with the new engines want maintenance support for them, and Vroom said that is driving them to leasing.
Vroom added that the next year or two should extend that trend as fleets begin planning equipment acquisition strategies before 2007, the date when the next round of even more stringent truck engine emission rules begin to go into effect.
"Leasing providers have the opportunity to test and benchmark new equipment before much of the trucking industry does," he explained. "We see that as a good advantage for leasing down the road as we get closer to 2007."