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Leasing behaviour in the market changes due to the unpredictable market

Frankfurt, 09.12.20

Lower mileage and longer use of the vehicles are the consequences of the current circumstances regarding leasing contracts in German fleets. In its recently published Leasing Analysis 2020, Dataforce provides detailed insights into the use of leasing and leasing providers in fleets and a corresponding outlook for planning in 2021.


Purchase or leasing? – Leasing shares slightly declining

Fleet managers decide whether to make an attractive purchase offer or a leasing contract when purchasing vehicles. Based on a sample of 18,000 interviews, Dataforce has observed a strong trend towards leasing in 2019, particularly for large fleets. This year the trend is not continuing. The reasons are manifold. On the one hand, the flexibility of car subscriptions also plays a greater role regarding commercial customers. Large fleets in particular see this as an added value for temporarily covering the mobility needs of their own employees. Another reason for this decreasing trend is the binding leasing contract: The idea of having the vehicle’s residual value on one’s own balance sheet seems to be gaining momentum again.


If we look at the share of passenger cars, almost 61 percent of vehicles are currently leased. This is a decrease of 0.5 percentage points compared to the previous year. The decline in large fleets in Germany was a major contributory factor here. In the case of smaller fleets, leasing remains an attractive option for keeping fleet costs under control.


Share of car leasing in the German fleet market, 2017-2020

Changes in the vehicle fleet through Corona

2020 is a drastic year, as the outlook from the fleet manager’s and company car driver’s point of view also shows. In 325 interviews, Dataforce asked managers and company car drivers about the impact of current developments on mobility and vehicle choice. 33 percent of fleet managers and drivers are expecting to see radical changes. Among fleet managers, it is more likely that a lower mileage and, due to contract adjustments, a longer usage will be two of those changes.
The company car drivers primarily name a change to a smaller vehicle class and even 44 percent name the loss of the vehicle as part of the employment contract.



Based on of the latest Dataforce study results presented here, the development of leasing shares shows a slight decline. There are many reasons for this, some of them are the desire for more ownership, especially in large fleets, but also in the current economic situation, in which some fleets are solving their mobility needs with car subscriptions or different ways of car rentals. In addition, there are also longer holding periods and lower mileage as a result of the pandemic. Even a certain volume of company car users is prepared to accept a downsizing of their own vehicle in order to avoid causing a great financial burden on their own company.


Further information and ordering options for the current Leasing Analysis 2020, with the additional options mileage and private leasing, can be found at

Publication only with indication of source (Dataforce).

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