Mazda Motors UK has signed a substantial fleet deal to supply a total of 3,030 vehicles to National Car Rental and its prestige self drive brand, Guy Salmon, in 2005.
Next year the manufacturer will supply a total of 2,000 Mazda6's and 1,000 Mazda3's to National Car Rental with 30 of its flagship RX-8 models being added to the Guy Salmon fleet. The contract is worth more than £40 million at showroom prices.
National Car Rental has been the marque’s preferred daily rental partner for the past two years and the 2005 deal signals a further strengthening of the relationship, which began in 2003 with the supply of 750 Mazda 6s and continued this year with the supply of 2,000 of the multi-award-winning Mazda6's.
All the cars in the 2005 contract are petrol-engined and will be operated by National Car Rental and Guy Salmon on a replacement cycle of a maximum of six months/10,000 miles. They will then be defleeted through Mazda’s franchise network.
In 2004, Mazda fleet sales are expected to total a record 16,000 units to account for approximately a third of the company’s UK business, and that volume is predicted to rise further next year as Mazda moves towards a 70,000 annual registration goal in the next three-four years with fleet penetration due to reach 35 per cent.
Mazda fleet and remarketing director David McGonigle said: "Our partnership with National Car Rental is a key part of Mazda’s growth ambitions as it gives the Mazda brand and our models huge exposure with approximately up to 100,000 people driving each model during its fleet life.
"National Car Rental’s decision to increase the number of Mazdas on its fleet is testimony to the excellent reliability and desirability of our model range - facets which fleet decision makers and company car drivers across Britain are recognising in ever-increasing numbers."
Meanwhile, Mazda’s decision to sell the defleeted cars through its dealer network is testimony to public demand for nearly-new cars from across the range.
Mr McGonigle said: "Demand for used Mazdas through our dealer network is huge. Defleeting the rental vehicles at six months gives our franchise network high quality used car stock and ensures that we can closely monitor supply, keeping residual values high.
"Demand for nearly-new used Mazda vehicles from the franchise network is such that on average each unit is currently sold within three days via our own used car website. I expect that demand to continue throughout 2005."
Stephen Deakin, Vice President Fleet for National Car Rental added: "We are delighted to have increased and renewed our association with Mazda for 2005. Our experience of the Mazda6 product has been excellent in terms of vehicle reliability and customer acceptance. Our solus arrangement works extremely well and operates in the true spirit of partnership.
"The Mazda3 we believe will be equally acceptable as one of the most attractive looking cars on the road in the UK, and the RX-8 will add yet another exciting model to the ever growing Guy Salmon specialist vehicle line up."
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