A company car can say a lot about you and your business, and I think we can all agree that on the whole, first impressions count. So, with budgets always in mind, many companies will be looking to upgrade their fleet of cars to a level that says ‘success’, but without going over the top. That’s not always as simple as it sounds, so here’s some inspiration.
The BMW 3 Series
The BMW 3 Series has won more fleet car awards than any other mainstream manufacturer’s model and it’s actually a very simple recipe for success; namely understated style, fuel efficiency and driver enjoyment. These ingredients all add up to badge desire and with badge desire BMW continue to win in fleet car world. Take a look here for some appealing lease car inspiration.
With every new BMW 3 Series model we see a gentle evolution from the last car with a refinement in styling, additional interior space, equipment upgrades – but not too much; remember this is BMW we’re talking about! – and further improvements to fuel efficiency and CO2 output. And BMW never let a new 3 Series leave home without making sure it drives like a dream.
All of things are very important to most company car drivers out there, but to the fleet cars manager, it’s all about the total CO2 output of his or her fleet of cars. The lower the better, and with every new BMW 3 Series, the CO2 continues its descent to the lowest levels surely possible from burning fossil fuels for power.
The Audi A4
The competition for the top German-built fleet car – the BMW 3 Series – is distinctly German too, from either Audi or Mercedes, so let’s deal with the Audi A4 first.
Audi are selling cars in huge amounts at the moment – many more than BMW in fact – but even with a cracking fleet car offering like the A4, they just haven’t been able to break the 3 Series’ hold on the fleet market. The problem for Audi isn’t that their product is necessarily inferior, as the A4 is a slickly engineered machine, it’s just that BMW grabbed the fleet market with a great 3 Series model so many years ago and have been scooping the awards every year ever since.
Apart from the obvious differences in styling with Audi matching the BMW for an aggressive front end, it’s the Audi models that tend to gently curve where the BMWs look sharp and angular. Audi generally manage to match the best from BMW in terms of diesel economy, too, so really it just boils down to how it drives.
Every 3 Series model is proudly rear-wheel drive, whereas an Audi in the same fleet-friendly price bracket would be front-wheel drive. Many fleet car drivers see rear-wheel drive as the purest, most driver-focused way to put the engine power on the road, and rear-wheel-driving has always been BMW’s unique selling point.
Mercedes C Class
The Mercedes-Benz C Class model goes head to head with the BMW 3 Series and Audi A4 for the fleet managers attention, but still even that famous Mercedes 3-point star badge cannot compete with the BMW’s might in the world of car leasing.
Again, like the Audi, the Mercedes is a nicely engineered piece of stylish and efficient German driving kit, but it just can’t compete on (perceived) dynamics next to the 3 Series, especially here in the UK where the 3 Series has long been the driver’s car of choice. Long live the BMW 3 Series.