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Long lead times push PCH customers into medium term rental, says Meridian

Phil Jerome, Meridian

Long lead times for new cars are causing a boom in medium-term rental, as PCH customers need vehicles to keep mobile.

Meridian Vehicle Solutions says new vehicles are typically taking up to four months to reach dealerships, which means leasing brokers are searching for short-term solutions to keep their customers happy.

“New car delivery times have clearly been a problem for some time but the growth of PCH is creating quite an acute and growing issue.

“Unlike company car drivers, people taking out these leases will often not have any alternative means of transport while waiting, so there is a demand for a vehicle solution that fills in the delivery gap.

“Short term rental is generally too expensive to be palatable but products like ours that are designed for 3-12 month periods at prices comparable to long term leases are much more competitive,” said Phil Jerome (pictured), managing director of Meridian.

The company’s fleet has doubled in size over the last 12 months and around 40% of its vehicles are now supplied through brokers on this basis.

Cars that are popular under these arrangements include Mercedes A-Class, E Class and GLC, BMW 5 Series, Volkswagen Golf GTi and Mini.

“Unlike short term rental, when people will often take the cheapest viable car available, our pricing is sufficiently economical to allow people to rent something comparable to the vehicle they have on order.”

Meridian provides medium term contracts to brokers and other intermediaries for periods of 3-12 months, with monthly lease rates comparable to long term contract hire and leasing. All cars are supplied new in a matter of days and delivered directly from franchise dealers.

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