Dubai: In any auto dealership’s books, getting 40 per cent of its sales volumes to fleet customers is pretty good going. Not for Tamer Al Hakeem, general manager for marketing at Hyundai UAE, part of the Juma Al Majid Group, and which represents the South Korean manufacturer in this market.
“Our aim is to attain 50 per cent and we firmly believe it is a doable,” said Al Hakeem. “It’s not just the higher volumes — fleet sales give those models a visibility that can only rub off positively on sales to individual buyers.
“Apart from the visibility, when a fleet buyer picks a particular model it is also a vote of confidence in its reliability and endurance. Again, these details score with individual owners.”
Hyundai UAE’s fleet volumes are built around four models — the Accent, Elantra, Sonata and Tucson. Going forward, the dealership hopes gains can be made with the manufacturer’s prestige label, the Genesis, in particular. In fact, the all-new Genesis is due for introduction shortly.
“Hyundai’s premium car focus started only two years ago and with the proper price positioning it can interest fleet buyers,” said Al Hakeem.
Since early December, local fleet sales have been particularly running high with major buyers scouring the market for deals. The momentum has been sustained into the first two months of this year, market sources added.
“Historically, we have had an advantage as Hyundai has always been able to launch new model year versions of the popular models right at the start of the year,” said Al Hakeem.
On whether Hyundai has been able to be a hit with fleet buyers for its hatchbacks, the official said: “The fleet market transactions are driven to a great extent by prices; hatches are typically made to European specifications and the perception has been that Japanese-built versions are lower priced and offer better resale.
“It’s a perception we will be trying to correct with the i20/i30 hatches, but it will require a sustained effort. For the moment, our fleet business will be built around the proven models, Accent, Elantra, etc.”