Industry Insights

Questions to ask your dealer when buying a new truck

Upsize your fleetBuying a new truck is one of the biggest decisions you might have to make this year so it’s important you’ve got your bases covered when it comes to budget and suitability for your task.

If you’re already operating a small to medium fleet, dig into the numbers and have a close look at how the trucks have been performing so far.

  • How much are your trucks costing you in fuel?
  • How appropriate are they for the current work tasks?
  • How much time have they spent off-road?
  • What are your long-term maintenance costs?
  • Have you had to wear costs from premature parts replacement?
  • If you’re doing in-house servicing, have new parts been easy to source and replace?

Each new vehicle purchase will come with long-term costs that need to be weighed up.

Before you get to the dealership, nut out exactly what you’ll need your new vehicle to do. Adding extra features or functions to a truck might seem like the right way to get more bang for your buck, but the extra weight and equipment will mean more fuel and maintenance costs down the track.

Jot down a wish list for what you’d like in your new truck, such as greater fuel efficiency, more reliability, increase in safety features and better performance under load.

Once you’ve stepped through the dealership doors, keep these quick questions in mind to help speed up the vehicle-owner matchmaking process.

  1. Can drivers operate the truck on a car driver’s licence?
  2. Will it meet our payload requirements?
  3. Will it provide us the sort of power and torque that I need?
  4. Does the truck come in the transmission type that we prefer our drivers to operate– Manual, Automatic-Manual or Automatic?
  5. What are my warranty and after-care options such as roadside assist etc.?
  6. Can you provide me with an idea of whole-of-life costing?
  7. How will this make/model fare come resale time?
  8. Offer aerodynamic features or add-ons – ideal for fuel saving on longer trips?
  9. Does it allow easy access into narrow driveways, and/or small turn-around areas and work sites?
  10. Does the truck readily allow special modifications for particular applications?
  11. Does it provide the back support and creature comforts of a passenger car?
  12. Provide the option to add a telematics tracking and reporting system?
  13. Include high-quality airbags, electronic stability control, backing camera or other specific safety features?

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