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Smart Fleets Archive



Navigating the Surge in Fuel Costs

| Grace Suizo |
High fuel prices have made it increasingly difficult for fleet operations to keep costs low – especially utility fleets, whose essential services require daily travel to job sites. According to Dan Remmert, senior manager of fleet services for Ameren Illinois, “Not only are fuel prices at record highs, but pretty much everything else it takes […]

The State of Electric Vehicle Order-to-Delivery Times

Despite manufacturers’ reassurances, vehicle delivery delays are expected. In February, Ford began deliveries of its E-Transit EV van to fleet customers, one of the earliest of the highly anticipated commercial-grade battery-powered vehicles to have its orders fulfilled. It’s a bright spot in the electric vehicle market as fleet managers keep an eye on shifting EV […]
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EV Decision-Making: Telematics to the Rescue

| David Cullen |
A utility fleet manager who is considering integrating electric vehicles into their operation faces a range of questions, including how telematics data will be tapped when running a mix of trucks powered by either internal combustion engines or electric drivetrains. In other words, will it be difficult to blend the data streams from these two […]
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Power Ahead: The Coming of Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Trucks

| David Cullen |
Even as electric utilities and other fleet operators are embracing battery-electric medium- and heavy-duty trucks to move to zero-emission power, another wave of alternative power is rolling in: the hydrogen fuel cell. Just as a battery-electric vehicle (BEV) delivers zero-emission power, so does a fuel-cell vehicle (FCV). Thanks to several key advantages of FCV design, […]
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Best Practices for Training Utility Fleet Drivers to Cut Engine Idling

| Gary L. Wollenhaupt |
Most fleet professionals understand the benefits of idle reduction. It’s the lowest of the low-hanging fruit. Unfortunately, too many fleet managers and drivers still believe certain old-school conventional wisdom, like starting a truck uses more fuel than letting it idle. Up-to-date research pokes holes in those old beliefs, but it can be hard to change […]
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Use New Tech to Manage Fleet Fuel Costs More Effectively

Despite all the technology available in today’s utility trucks, the most critical connection is still between the driver’s brain and foot. But OEMs and the aftermarket are also offering tools to monitor driver and vehicle performance, and upgraded equipment can reduce the need for idling. Making smart fleet acquisition decisions can pay off as well. […]
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How Leasing May Smooth the Electric Transition

| David Cullen |
It may be too early in the game for fleet operators to factor in the impact of battery-electric trucks on maintenance costs and resale values. Some experts hold that the cost of maintenance may be lower thanks to fewer moving parts on electric vehicles, yet it may be higher for other aspects, such as future […]
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Integrating OEM Telematics into Your Fleet

| Sandy Smith |
Jessica Lauer, fleet analyst for Detroit-based DTE Energy, is responsible for overseeing metrics for the company’s 3,700 Class 1-8 vehicles. That’s not always easy to do, particularly with some of DTE’s Class 5-8 vehicles. Problems have occurred after telematics devices were installed on the assets but before they were driven by the business units. “It […]
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Wireless Charging Unleashes Electric Vehicle Fleets

| Gary L. Wollenhaupt |
If your utility operates electric vehicles – or is planning to do so – the emergence of wireless charging technology could impact vehicle selection and charging infrastructure decisions. Currently, wireless charging is available for smartphones and other small electronics. But wireless EV charging could be a key to widespread transportation electrification. In the utility industry, […]
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Utility Fleet Best Practices for Idle Reduction

| Grace Suizo |
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, some utility fleets have discovered that their idling has increased. So – perhaps now more than ever – it’s imperative for fleets to identify instances where idling can be controlled and act on them. UFP recently spoke with three fleet industry professionals who shared tips on how to […]
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Selecting the Right Fuel Card Program for Your Fleet

| Grace Suizo |
With fuel being one of the greatest expenses for any fleet organization, a fuel card program can be a helpful and efficient way to keep track of spending, usually at little or no cost to fleets. Recently, Utility Fleet Professional spoke with two fuel card experts who shared tips for what to look for in […]
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Where Sustainability Meets Service: Finding the Right Fit for EVs in Utility Fleets

| Max Chesnes |
For several years, Joe Korn, a truck and alternative fuel consultant with ARI’s (www.arifleet.com) business intelligence and analytics team, has been working with some of the company’s North American customers to implement alternative fuel strategies. One of his priorities is to provide fleet expertise to clients aiming to bridge the gap between internal combustion engines […]
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