It‘s official – car leasing and rental companies in South Africa prefer Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) over other vehicle manufacturers.
This means that for the hundreds of thousands of people who rely on leased or rented cars, the chances of that car being a Volkswagen (VW) or its premium sibling Audi are very good.
The Uitenhage-based company cleaned up at the 18th annual South African Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (Savrala) Motor Manufacturer of the Year awards, held recently at a gala banquet in Sandton.
Savrala represents 90% of vehicle leasing and rental companies countrywide – including Avis, Hertz, Europcar, Budget and Tempest – and is the biggest vehicle buyer after government with the purchase of about 120 000 new cars annually.
The awards, a result of an exhaustive bi-annual polling of Savrala members, saw Volkswagen scoop gold for the coveted Manufacturer of the Year in both the leasing and rental categories, beating Hyundai and General Motors SA respectively.
Audi won the Most Improved Leasing and Overall Most Improved categories, while Volkswagen again took gold for Overall Manufacturer of the Year, as well as Best Manufacturer’s Technical Representative in the leasing category.
David Powels, Managing Director: Volkswagen Group South Africa said the awards were the result of a team effort and something to be proud of.
“Congratulations must go to the VWSA Fleet Sales team and to the VWSA Rental Sales team for this clean sweep of awards two years in a row. Through them our customers have recognised Volkswagen Group South Africa for its on-going commitment to customer satisfaction,” Powels said.
Savrala chairman Wayne Duvenage said the awards went beyond the look and feel of cars, to the companies’ back-up support for the rental and leasing industry.
“We get all our members to evaluate their vehicles in a survey twice a year. It’s an intensive process,” Duvenage said.
“In our industry it’s around value for money and safety – how attentive the manufacturers are to the needs of the industry. We require bulk purchasing and delivery on time to meet our needs.
“Also, when parts are needed, what the parts supply is from the manufacturer and how quickly our cars can be fixed if something goes wrong. You don’t want to buy a specific vehicle and suddenly they are unable to be serviced because there are no parts available.”
With fleets having a shelf-life of between a year (rental) and about four years (leasing), resale values and demand in the second hand car market were also major factors.
“Value is a big thing for us; how easily are we able to buy and then sell our cars. A big aspect of the value of those cars is how easy is it to move that product at the end of its fleet life.
“If you’re in the business of renting or leasing, you’re in the business of selling those cars at the end of the day. All of those things determine what a good supplier is.”
2012 Savrala Motor Manufacturer of the Year winners:
Manufacturer of the Year Leasing Gold: Volkswagen South Africa
- Manufacturer of the Year Leasing Silver: Hyundai Automotive South Africa
- Manufacturer of the Year Leasing Bonze: Nissan South Africa
Manufacturer of the Year Rental Gold: Volkswagen South Africa
- Manufacturer of the Year Rental Silver: General Motors South Africa
- Manufacturer of the Year Rental Bonze: Hyundai Automotive South Africa
Most Improved Leasing: Audi South Africa
- Most Improved Rental: General Motors South Africa
Overall Most Improved: Audi South Africa
Overall Manufacturer of the Year Gold: Volkswagen South Africa
- Overall Manufacturer of the Year Silver: Hyundai Automotive Motors South Africa
- Overall Manufacturer of the Year Bonze: General Motors South Africa
- Best Account Executive Leasing: Faan Fourie from Toyota SA Motors (Pty) Ltd
- Best Account Executive Rental: Carin Delport from Toyota SA Motors (Pty) Ltd
Best Manufacturer’s Technical Representative Leasing: Lutendo Mudau – Volkswagen South Africa