A division of the Glasgow-based GAP Hire Solutions plant and tool rental group, GAP Vehicle Hire was formed a year ago in response to demand from established customers and targets fleet rentals and long-term contracts.
The new venture is about to open a second, vehicle hire ‘mega depot’ on a four-acre site in Manchester, with a third earmarked for London in 2017, and has ordered 48 Citan 109 CDI Longs to add to its 1,000-strong van fleet.
The vehicles arrived via North-East dealer Bell Truck and Van, with the firm h having tested the breakdown service first.
“The rationale in forming the new division was to provide GAP Group customers with a ‘one-stop shop’ solution,” said Mr Forrester. “So now, as well as their plant, equipment and tools, they can also rent their vans from us.”
“It was just good business practice,” explained operations director Jim Forrester. “People promise a lot in life, but we were about to make a substantial investment in these vehicles so it made sense to test the breakdown service before committing ourselves.
“We did so three times in different parts of the country, and I’m delighted to say that I couldn’t fault the response from any of the Dealers. This exercise, coupled with my previous experience in the industry, confirmed that when it comes to after sales support Mercedes-Benz is second to none.”
The company’s vehicles operate in the liveries of its customers. Jim Forrester continued: “Given the volumes involved and the duration of the contracts it is crucial that we have full confidence in the vans we supply to our customers, and that we keep them on the road.
“You only get one chance when you’re competing against the big PLCs so our service levels have to be better, and our products fit for purpose and exceptionally reliable. All of the feedback we’ve received from operators confirms that Mercedes-Benz vans tick both boxes, while they also command strong residual values – we’ve tested these too, and they were in line with expectations.”