We propose five criteria to know how to choose a truck for your fleet, a critical decision for any transport company. Knowing how to select the ideal truck is essential, both in large and small companies. In a large company because of the number of trucks, it can buy. In a small one because of the tremendous effort involved in purchasing a truck for your treasury.
Do you need another truck?
This is the first question you should ask yourself. Optimize the use of your trucks. Find out in detail the status of your fleet. You must know the mileage and age of each truck and determine its useful life. Plan and design the routes to carry out. Take into account the type of load you carry in each of them.
Buying a new truck is a decision that you cannot take lightly. Each vehicle in your fleet should be an investment, never an expense. You must be sure that it will be profitable and productive for your company. That every penny you invest in it will have a return.
Because the truck’s cost is not only its purchase price, it is also the gasoline that you will consume day after day. The periodic maintenance that it will require. Even the repairs you may need. Buying a new truck is, therefore, a decision that must be argued and reflected.
At this point … Are you still convinced that you need a new truck?
If your no answer is NO, you will have already found the usefulness of this article. Even so, I invite you to continue reading it. In the case that your answer is YES, you need to read it to the end. Only then will you know how to make the most profitable decision for your company.
Will you buy a new truck or a second-hand one?
When buying a truck, the first thing to decide is whether you will buy it new or go to the second-hand market.
The first option is to go directly to the dealer. There you can buy a completely new truck, with all that that implies. It is a truck that a priori will have an optimal operation. Its lifespan will be very long. It is supposed to take time to need expensive repairs. And it should also be technologically updated. The second option is to look for a second-hand truck.
For this, it is also an excellent option to go to the dealer. But you will also find a multitude of businesses for buying and selling used trucks. You can even carry out the transaction between individuals. The main benefit, in this case, is the price. A second-hand truck is usually priced well below that of a new one.
It would help if you kept in mind that the price you pay for your truck is not the same as the cost it generates and is going to generate for you. Everything will depend on how you can amortize each truck. The acquisition price must be divided by the years of useful life. And you should also bear in mind that a second-hand truck does not start from scratch. It already has mileage, age, and accumulated wear.
So … what should you buy?
There is no absolute answer. What you should do is assess your needs. Compare the prices of a new and a second-hand truck and put them in context. Calculate how much it will cost you to amortize the truck in each case. And from there, make the decision that can most benefit your company.
How to choose a new truck?
Buying a new truck may seem like an easy thing to do. All trucks work fine when they have just left the factory. So why waste time with that? You can go to the usual dealership and buy the truck that the commercial that you trust recommends.
You could do that, but it is not the option of those looking to optimize their business. There are several details that you should take into account when deciding which new truck to buy. It is a decision important enough for you to spend some time on it.
So before buying a new truck …
- Think first of all the concrete use that you are going to give it. Plan for which specific routes you want that truck. Please take into account the type and size of the load you will transport in it. If a medium-size truck works for you, don’t buy a large one. If you are transporting hazardous material, make sure it meets all the requirements.
- Take into account the power. As you know, more power means more fuel consumption. Don’t splurge, but don’t fall short either. Anyway, in this article, you will discover how to save on fuel.
- Do not close yourself to a brand, even if it has always given you a good performance. Today various truck brands offer excellent performance. It is usual that if you are used to one, in particular, you are reluctant to change.
- Go personally to each dealership with the idea of the truck you want very clear. Do not let any commercial divert you from it; no one knows better than you what truck you need.
- Once you have been able to make a list of the trucks that fit your needs, compare them to each other. Do not focus only on price, although it is a significant factor. Evaluate the pros and cons of each candidate truck and choose effectively and wisely.
- Before buying a second-hand truck …
Read this section. When you invest as crucial as buying a truck, it is inevitable to assume a series of risks. But if the truck you buy is second-hand, the risks multiply.
As an expert in the transport sector, you can detect with some ease when a truck is in good condition. You will know when they try to deceive you and when you have found a great opportunity. Even so, there are certain premises that you should keep in mind when you want to buy a second-hand truck :
- Go to truck sales companies that you find trustworthy. If it is a private person, try to make it someone you know or of whom you have good references. In any case, look for guarantees on the truck.
- Inspect the truck thoroughly. Observe for possible leaks. Personally check the brakes, transmission, steering, and gaskets. Check the condition of the bodywork, looking for rusted or weakened metal.
- It detects the different repairs that the truck has undergone. Ask what they were due to. Find the parts that were recently changed. You will be able to know if it is a truck that requires high maintenance costs.
- As a final step, before buying a second-hand truck, please take it to your trusted workshop for a complete overhaul. It is always possible that something has been overlooked. And remember, you must minimize purchase risks.
- Don’t neglect the documentation.
The purchase of the truck is formalized by delivering the pertinent documentation. These documents are essential for the transaction to be carried out under the terms established by law. If you buy a new truck, you will not have any problem in that regard. But if you buy a second-hand one, especially from individuals, some of these documents may fail.
The main document of the purchase of a truck is the contract of the transaction. It must identify both the seller and the buyer. Also, all the truck information will appear, such as the model, make and license plate. The contract must also state the price, payment method, and delivery date of the truck.
If the purchase is of a used truck, you must also make sure that the seller is up to date on the road tax and the ITV. If significant modifications have been made to the truck, these must appear on the technical card.
It would help if you also asked for the maintenance book and the repair invoices to verify a match. Also, it will be necessary that you obtain a report of the second-hand vehicle in the Vehicle Registry of the DGT. In that report, the possible fines pending payment or the embargoes will appear.
Have a planned process of buying your trucks will make you make the final decision with discretion. You will buy the truck that best suits your needs, be it new or second-hand, And you will also get the most productivity and profitability out of it. Buying a truck is a critical decision; dedicate the necessary time and effort to it.