LEADING property support services company OCS is making sure its field based sales staff and systems engineers make the most efficient and effective customer visits, by specifying satellite navigation as part of an all-diesel two-year new vehicle supply contract with Vauxhall.

OCS, the largest privately owned international property services organisation with operations throughout the UK, Europe and Australasia, operates a fleet of 1,100 cars and 1,400 light commercial vehicles in this country.

As part of the new vehicle supply arrangement, it expects to order up to 500 cars, primarily Vectras, with Vauxhall’s CD ROM-driven satellite navigation system, and is also trialling the system in its light commercial vehicles.

A further 500 cars on the OCS fleet will be the highly acclaimed New Astra 1.7CDTi which will be used by its field-based contract managers.

"We have specified satellite navigation for field staff and systems engineers to help them plan their journeys more effectively and make the most efficient use of their time in making customer visits.

"We already had a strong Astra representation on the fleet and with the arrival of the excellent new Astra, we saw no reason to change that. We will be ordering Club and Life models, " said Chris Cracknell, chief executive of OCS.

At the same time, OCS has switched from purchasing its car fleet outright to a solus contract hire arrangement with Bristol-based ALD Automotive, while the light commercial fleet will continue to be operated on an outright purchase basis.

The company runs its fleet on a four-year, 100,000 mile replacement cycle and expects to take up to 600 new Vauxhalls over the next 48 months, mainly diesel Astras and Vectras.

It will also order new diesel powered Combos, Vivaros and Movanos for its light commercial fleet, including the Combo 1.7CDTi, the Vivaro 1.9CDTI and the LWB Movano 2.5Di high roof.

OCS already operates one of the largest fleets of the award-winning Movano in the country with some 500 of the panel vans on the fleet of one of the company’s divisions.

OCS will also continue to operate some 40 Vauxhall Dualfuel vehicles, mainly Astras, Vectras and Combos within the central London congestion-charging zone.

Chris Cracknell said: "The LPG vehicles are being used by cleaning operatives and service and maintenance engineers who travel every day into central London. They have already proved very effective in avoiding the congestion charge."

Maurice Howkins, Vauxhall and Saab fleet sales director said: "We are delighted to be continuing our relationship with OCS and look forward to meeting their vehicle requirement needs for many years."

Published : 19/10/04 Author : Melanie Carter

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