Unipart Automotive has taken delivery of its first vehicles as part of a new five-year vehicle management and contract hire agreement with the Leasedrive Group.
Andrew Gerrish, projects director, Unipart Automotive, said: "Our move to Leasedrive has gone extremely smoothly with an implementation programme executed within a very tight two-month timescale.
"In January, we signed a contract for the delivery of 328 new Renault Kangoo vans this year and the first vans have just been delivered. The first replacement company cars are also imminent.
“We have just rolled out a new fleet policy after an extensive review with Leasedrive. The previous policy was very restrictive on car choice and by basing the car offer on whole life costs we have significantly widened choice, despite reducing the categories from eight to four.
"For example, a branch manager used to be restricted to one vehicle, with the opportunity to upgrade at a premium to the next highest model, both on limited colour choice. Now a branch manager has a choice of 12 cars, six of which he or she can upgrade to for an extra £9 to £42 per month."
He added that there is also the opportunity for someone at this management level to upgrade to the next car category for a fairly modest premium, and this list has another 14 cars to choose from.
"The new fleet policy has been extremely well received by the eligible employee population and the better car choice has been delivered at no extra cost to the company," said Gerrish.
Roddy Graham at Leasedrive, said: "Hard work from our dedicated account team and the effective use of RunOut:Manager enabled us to seamlessly transfer over 1,000 vehicles within a constrained timescale.
"Since then we have managed the legacy fleet and started delivery of new vehicles under three-year/75,000-mile maintenance-inclusive contract hire agreements.
"Naturally under the maintenance-inclusive contract hire agreements, Unipart Automotive has expressed a desire to use its own Unipart Car Care Centre programme for SMR work where possible.
"In a reciprocal arrangement, following our own review of the 700 odd independent garages operating under the umbrella programme, we have invited interested garages to sign-up to our nationwide service network with fixed regional labour rates and car parts prices."